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The Kingdom of Kippen: 





munro & jamieson, a « «3 

26 craigs. ^j^*-t 






Advancement in Husbandry, - 42 

Agricultural Machinery, - 44 

Ayrshire Cattle, 46 

Chemistry, 46 

Famous Clydesdales, .... 45 

Owners of Farms, 46 

The Farmer, 41 

The Farm Servant, 41 

The Laird, 40 





Proprietors of Boquhan, - - 1 - 1 32 

The Battle of Ballochleam, - - - 132 




Banking, 74 

Buchlyvie Agricultural Association, - 74 

Buchlyvie and District Ploughing Society, 76 

Buchlyvie Curling Club, - 78 
Buchlyvie, Fintry, and Vale of Menteith 

Horse-Breeding Association, - 76 

Industry, 73 

Ministerial, ------ 73 

Places of Interest, 74 

Public Hall, r 73 



County Council, 33 

Parish Council, 31 

" Provosts," 30 

School Board, ------ 33 


Local Rejoicings, 174 


A Skirmish with Soldiers, - - - 158 

Conventicles Still Held, - - - - 165 

Drumelog, 160 

" Indulged" Ministers, 159 

Love for Former Minister, - - - 156 

Open Defiance, 160 

The " Curate " andsthe Crying Children, 156 

u The Preaching Howe," - - - - 157 

The Solemn League and Covenant, - 155 

Ure of Shirgarton, 158 

A Good Man and True, - - - - 170 

A Narrow Escape, 167 

Bothwell Brig, 162 

Covenanters Routed, - - - . 163 

Death of Ure, 169 

More Settled Times, - - - - 168 

Mrs. Ure Arrested, 167 

Ure Joins the West Men, - - - 161 

Ure's Possessions Forfeited, - - - 164 

Ure Returns from Ireland, - - - 166 



A Seceder, 122 

Chapel of Dundaf f, 112 

Clergy Roll of Kippen— 

Free Church, -- - . 122 

Parish Church, - - - - 120 

Curfew Bell, - - - - - . 123 

Football Playing on Sundays, - - - 123 

Kippen Kirk Lands Given to Earl of Mar, 114 

Modern Religious Episode, - - - 124 



New Kirk Site, 115 

Parish Church at Kippen, - - - 107 
Second Parish Church — 

Church Tower Clock, - - - 117 

Communion Cups, - - - - 118 

Old Church Bell, - - - - 117 

The Minister and His Pigs, 123 

Third Parish Church — 

Its Clock and Bell, - - - - 118 

Three Chapels in Kippen, - - - 116 

United Free Church, - - - - 119 





Broehs at Coldoch and Drum, - - 138 

Their Builders, 137 

What were Keirs ? - - - - - 138 


King of Kippen, 26 

" Oot o' the World and into Kippen," - 27 




Balgair, 51 

Corn Market, 52 

St. Mauvae's, 51 

The " Feeing Fair," .... 53 


Brick and Tile Works, - 38 

Creameries, 38 

Malting and Distilling, - 36 

Meal Mills, 37 

Miscellaneous, 39 

Tanning and Tambouring, - 35 

Vineries, 38 

Weaving, 36 



A Socrates of the " Kingdom," - - 95 

Isaac M'Gregor, a Sheriff Court Witness, 84 

A Practical Joke, - - - 88 

Meat and Mustard, 96 

Sandy Munchausen, - - - - 91 

Clash- Brae Bogles, ... 94 

Ploo'in' Extraordinary, - 92 

Sooming Episode, - 93 

Twa Verra Brithers, .... go 


Crooks of Broieh, 134 

The Bloody Mires, 135 



Baronies, 19 

PARISH CEMETERY, - - - - - 101 


Reclaiming the Land, - - - - 140 

Roman Relics Found, - - - - 140 




Crossing the Ford of Frew, - - 126 



Gillespie Memorial Hall, 82 

Kippen Public Hall, ----- 82 


Swordsmanship, 129 

The Abduction of Jean Key, - - - 129 

The Herriship of Kippen, - - - 127 




A Man-of- War's Trick, - - - - 149 

Dougal's Tower, 151 

Excise Officers' Dangers, - - - 150 

The Sma' Still and Sma' Keg, - - - 148 

The Last of the Race, - - - - 151 




Social Changes, - - - - - 51 

Carse, 47 

Dryfield, 48 

Old Yew Tree at Arngomery, - 48 



Dasher Common, 79 

Shirgarton Common, .... 80 

Curling Clubs, 62 

Cardross and Kepp, ... 64 

Kippen Curling Club, - 63 

Gargunnock Farmers' Club, ... 54 

Horticultural Societies, - 67 

Kippen and District Burns Club, - - 69 

Kippen Highland Gathering, - - - 71 

Kippen Parish Hearse Society, - - 56 

Kippen Reading and Recreation Club, - 72 
Ploughing Societies — 

Arnprior and District Ploughing 

Society, 65 

The Kippen and District Farmers' 

Club, 66 


A " Tiff " with the Laird, ... 80 



Frontispiece — 

The Hole of Sneath, boquhan Glen. 


Belfry, Old Parish Church, 120 

Brig o' Frew, The, 128 

Cauldhame, - - - - - . - 104 

Cross, The, Kippen, 56 

Dougal's Tower, Kippen, 152 

Fore Road, Kippen, 88 

Kippen From the South, - - - 17 

MAIN STREET, BUCHLYYIE, Looking East,- 112 

Do., do., Looking West,- 73 

Main Street, Kippen, 25 

Parish Church, Kippen, ... - 40 

Preaching Howe, The, 157 

United Free Church, Kippen, - - 48 
United Free Church, Station road, 

buchlyyie, 32 


Abercromby, John, Palmerston Place, Edinburgh. 

Allan, John, Gateside, Kippen. 

Anderson, J. L., Northumberland Street, Edinburgh. 

Anderson, Mrs., Shirgarton, Kippen. 

Armstrong, Peter, Arnprior. 

Armstrong, "William, Arnprior. 

Bain, James, Public Library, Toronto. 

Ballantine, Alexander, F.S.A. (Scot.), George Street, Edinburgh. 

Ballingall, D., Blair Drummond. 

Bell, Alexander, Ash Road, Saltley, Birmingham. 

Bilsland, John, Lynedoch Place, Glasgow. 

Bilsland, William, Park Circus, Glasgow. 

Blair, John, Balboughty, by Perth. 

Blair, John, Ladylands, Kippen. 

Brown, Charles, Kerse, Falkirk. 

Brown, Jas., Windsor Place, Stirling. 

Buchanan, Alexander, Laurel Cottage, Kippen. 

Buchanan, D. S., Cherrybank, Balfron. 

Buchanan, Robert, Cross Keys Hotel, Kippen. 

Buchanan, W. J., Forth Vineyards, Kippen. 

Buntine, J. R., Torbrex House, Stirling. f 

Cameron, D. Y., Kippen. 

Campbell, Alex., jun., Music Hall, Kippen. 

Campbell, Jas. A., London. 

Cant, Robert, Buchlyvie. 

Chrystal, Andrew, Graham Street, Kippen. 

Chrystal, David, Murray Place, Stirling. 

Chrystal, Robert, Fore Road, Kippen. 

Clark, Angus, Black Bull House, Kippen. 

Clark, Barbara M., Benview, Kippen. 

Clark, J. T., Advocates' Library, Edinburgh. 

Clark, Thomas, Fore Road, Kippen. 

Colville, Arch., Arngomery, Kippen. 

Connal, Miss, Parae Canal Reserve, Christchurch, New Zealand. 

Davidson, Alexander, Cauldhame, Kippen. 
Dawson, James, Park Gardens, Glasgow. 
Denovan, Robert, Bannockburn. 
Dewar, Peter, Arnprior. 


Dickson, Rev. J. G., The Manse, Kippen. 
Donald, John, North Wallace Street, Glasgow. 
Dougal, Robert, Castlehill, Kippen. 
Dougall, Charles S., Dollar Academy. 
Dougall, James S., Buluwayo, South Africa. 
Dougall, Robert, Post Office, Kippen. 
Drysdale, John, Arngibbon, Port of Menteith. 
Dun, Alex., Murray Place, Stirling. 
Duncan, J. A., Aston, Bridge of Allan. 
Duncanson, James, Larne Smithy, Kippen. 
Duncanson, John, Crown Hotel, Kippen. 

Ewing, Robt. Leckie, Devongrove, Dollar. 

Ferguson, John, National Bank House, Stirling. 
Ferguson, Rev. John, Aberdalgie. 
Finlayson, John, Beech Cottage, Kippen. 
Fisher, Robert, Fairfield Lodge, Kippen. 
Forrester, Andrew, Clarendon Crescent, Edinburgh. 
Forrester, Wm., Arngibbon, Kippen. 

Galbraith, William, Castle Street, Edinburgh. 

Gilchrist, John, Aros House, Kippen. 

Gordon, George, Kippen. 

Gordon, Rev. Robert, Glencairn, Thornhill, Dumfriesshire 

Gow, Leonard, Hayston, Kelvinside, Glasgow. 

Graham, George, Faraway, Kippen. 

Graham, J. C, Ballewan, Blanefield. 

Gray, Archibald, Wright Park, Kippen. 

Gray, Geo., Town Clerk, Rutherglen. 

Gray, Isaac, The Stables, Arngomery, Kippen. 

Gray-Buchanan, A. W., Parkhill, Polmont. 

Groves, Hector, Graham Street, Kippen. 

Hall, Thomas, Home Farm, Boquhan, Kippen. 

Hartley, J. E., Klerksdorp, Transvaal. 

Harvey, Alexander, Arngomery, Kippen. 

Harvie, John, Rosebank, Kippen. 

Harvie, Mrs., Mitcham. 

Harvie-Brown, J. A., of Shirgarton, Dunipace House, Larbert. 

Hawick, James, Fourmerk, Kippen. 

Henderson, A. W., Airthrey Mills, Bridge of Allan. 

Henderson, Hugh, Murray Place, Stirling. 

Henderson, Jas., Snowdon Place, Stirling. 

Holmes, W. & R., Dunlop Street, Glasgow. 

Hunter, James, Schoolhouse, Kippen. 

Hutton, James, Fore Road, Kippen. 


Jamieson, Geo., Hopetoun House. 
Jamieson, John, " Stirling Observer." 
Jenkins, A. & J., Port Street, Stirling. 
Johnston, James, High Street, Alloa. 

Kidston, R., Clarendon Place, Stirling. 
Kilpatrick, D. R., Dunallan, Kippen. 

Lawrie, Sir Archibald, The Moss, Dumgoyne. 

Liddel, George, Laurel Cottage, Kippen. 

Logie, D. W., Murray Place, Stirling. 

Lowson, George, LL.D., M.A, Rector, High School, Stirling. 

Macallan, James, Canning Place, Glasgow. 

MacDonald, T. D., Stirling Station. 

Macfarlane, John, North Street, Glasgow. 

Mackay, Eneas, Murray Place, Stirling. 

Maclay, William, Cora Exchange Buildings, Glasgow. 

Mailer, Peter, Ladylands, Kippen. 

Mason, Alex., Thistle Cottage, Kippen. 

Mason, David, Thistle Cottage, Kippen. 

Melles, J. W., London. 

Mitchell, A., Hartington Road, Liscard, Cheshire. 

Mitchell, Stephen, Boquhan, Kippen. 

Monteath, J., Wright Park, Kippen. 

Montgomery, John, Burnside Cottage, Buchlyvie. 

Montgomery, Wm., Great Western Road, Glasgow. 

More, John, Fordhead, Kippen. 

Muirhead, D. J., Middleton, Port of Menteith. 

Munro, John J., " Observer ■ Office, Stirling. 

M'Ewan, James, Settie, Kippen. 

M'Ewan, William, Public Library, Stirling. 

M'Gibbon, Moses, Sauchiehall Street, Glasgow. 

M'Kerracher, John, Drumviach, Callander. 

M'Lay, James, Newburn, Port of Menteith. 

M'Lay, Thomas, Blackhouse, Port of Menteith. 

M'Lean, John, Main Street, Kippen. 

M'Nicoi Arch., Jewett City, U.S.A. 

M'Nie, Donald, Muirton, Port of Menteith. 

M'Niven, M., Westerton Farm, Kippen. 

M'Phie, James, jun., Buchlyvie. 

M'Queen, George, Kirkhill Cottage, Kippen. 

M'Queen, William, Shirgarton, Kippen. 

Panton, W. S., Stormont Lodge, Blairgowrie. 
Paterson, John, Wester Frew, Kippen. 
Paton, Wm., Royal Bank, Stirling. 


Ramsay, John, Bothwell Street, Glasgow. 
Rennie, Andrew, Content Place, Port-Glasgow. 
Rennie, John, Smithy Buildings, Kippen. 
Rennie, Mrs. Andrew, Elmbank, Kippen. 
Rennie, Robert, Content Place, Port-Glasgow. 
Reoch, Andrew, Oakwood, Buchlyvie. 
Robertson, Annie, Queen Street, Stirling. 
Robertson, John, Cairn Cottage, Kippen. 
Robertson, Stewart A., Clarendon Place, Stirling. 
Rodgers, William, Locust Avenue, Amsterdam, N.Y. 
Rogers, Miss, Glentirran Cottage, Kippen. 
Royal Philosophical Society of Glasgow. 

Samuel, John S., J.P., F.R.S.E., Park Avenue, Glasgow. 

Scott, David, " Stirling Journal" Office, Stirling. 

Scouler, Alexander, Middlekerse, Kippen. 

Shearer, John E., King Street, Stirling. 

Simpson, Robert, Buchlyvie. 

Sorley, Bailie R., St. Vincent Street, Glasgow. 

Stewart, Alexander, Gartfarren, Gartmore. 

Stewart, Duncan, Oxhill, Kippen. 

Stirling, James, Garden, Port of Menteith. 

Stirling, Mrs. Jessie, Glentirran, Kippen. 

Syme, Thomas, Strathview, Kippen. 

Taylor, Luke, Arnprior, Port of Menteith. 
Trotter, Alexander, Redgatehill, Kippen. 

Ure, George, Wheatlands, Bonnybridge. 

Walker, Thomas, Reid Street, Springburn. 
Watson, George, The Cross, Kirkhill, Kippen. 
Watson, Mrs. Anne, Westbourne Terrace, Glasgow. 
Welsh, Thomas, Beechwood, Kippen. 
Williams, Rev. Geo., U.F.C. Manse, Norrieston. 
Wilson, William, Fairfield, Kippen. 

Young, John, Claylands, Kippen. 
Young, Provost, Claylands, Kippen. 

The Kingdom of Kippen: 




THE VILLAGE OF KIPPEN, otherwise known as 
the " Kingdom of Kippen/' is situated on an 
eminence overlooking the Valley of the Forth, 
and commands upwards of thirty miles of landscape view. 
Within three minutes' walk of the Cross of Kippen, on the 
road to Music Hall, and about thirty yards from the first 
house in that hamlet, is to be found one of the most 
extensive and beautiful views in Great Britain. On the 
right, rising like towers in the valley, we have the three 
crags, viz., Craigforth, Abbey Craig, and Stirling Castle ; 
in the distance, Demyat and the Ochil Range; and 
sweeping towards the left, the wild heaths of Uam Var, 
Ben Voirlich, Bed Ledi, Ben A'an, the rugged cliffs of 
Ben Venue, Ben More, and Ben Lomond; while lying 
spread out at our feet is the Carse of Stirling, which 
merges into and includes the Vale of Menteith. The scene, 
as far as the eye can reach, is classic. There are associa- 
tions of thrilling historic interest connected with the 
district, while Sir Walter Scott has added creations to it 
of romance and song which will never die. 


SCOTLAND was divided into parishes during the 
twelfth century. The parish of Kippen lies chiefly 
in Stirlingshire, but in different places is intersected 
by portions of Perthshire, which run across it from north 
to south for nearly a third part of the parish. The 


boundaries of the County, especially in this parish, are 
somewhat perplexing and eccentric, showing something 
like a zig-zag, or forked appearance. An insulated portion 
of Perthshire, about two miles long and half-a-mile broad, 
embraces a part of the village. A portion of the Manse, 
e.g., the kitchen part, is in Perthshire, the remainder being 
in Stirlingshire, thus enabling the dinner to be cooked in 
Perthshire and partaken of in Stirlingshire. The greatest 
length of the parish is about eight miles, and its breadth 
from two to five miles. The river Forth is the boundary 
on the north, dividing it from the parishes of Port of 
Menteith, Norrieston, Kilmadock, and Kincardine. On 
the west, Kippen marches with the parish of Drymen ; 
on the south with Balfron ; and on the east, the burn of 
Boquhan forms the boundary between it and Gargunnock. 
Descending from the rock of Ballochleam (Gaelic — 
Beallach-leum signifies " the gorge-leap ; " Beallach is 
an upland gorge or rising pass) the burn meets with the 
red sandstone, through which it has opened a passage, and 
wrought its soft materials into a number of curious forms 
resembling the wells and cauldrons of the Devon. After 
running through the beautiful and picturesque Glen 
Boquhan, equalled only by the Trossachs, and through 
which the proprietor has made extensive and agreeable 
walks, the burn discharges itself into the Forth at the 
Ford of Frew, and forms the natural boundary of the 
parish in the south and east. 


IN old records Kippen is sometimes spelt Kippan, 
Kippene, Kippone, Kyppane. The derivation of the 
name, given in the old " Statistical Account," from 
Ceap, English cape, meaning a headland or promontory, is 
likely enough, as it describes pretty well the appearance of 
the parish, jutting out into the carse land below. At the 
same time, it might be derived from the Gaelic 
Ciopan (pronounced Kippan), which means the stumps 
or roots of trees, and in that case it would refer to the 


remains of the forest which undoubtedly at an early period 
covered both the high and low lands of the parish. To 
support this derivation, we have places in this and neigh- 
bouring parishes, such as Kep or Keppoch, which obviously 
means the " field of the stumps," and, more distinctly still, 
Kepdarroch, " the field of the stumps of oak trees." 
Inverkip, in Renfrewshire, is explained by Colonel 
Robertson, in his " Gaelic Topography," as " the confluence 
of the roots of stumps." 


The Parish of Kippen was sub-divided into eleven 
Baronies or properties, belonging to gentlemen entitled to 
call themselves Barons. Regarding the origin of the 
title Baron there have been differences of opinion. 
Derivations of the word have been sought for in the 
Celtic, Teutonic, and Hebrew languages, but it would 
appear that the term Baron was introduced by the 
Normans into this country, which points, therefore, to a 
conclusion favourable to a Romanee origin. From an 
early period Barons were distinguished as greater and 
lesser, and, according to old Scotch law, the greater Barons 
had certain rights relative to and direct from the King 
himself, which were confirmed by Crown Charters. These 
rights embraced not merely civil but criminal jurisdiction, 
to which all the people or inhabitants of the particular 
Baronies were amenable. The lesser Barons held their 
lands from the greater by a tenure of military service, and 
it was to the lesser Barons that the eleven gentlemen in 
this district belonged. Modern legislation has, however, 
obstructed the exercise of Baronial rights : indeed, by the 
20th Act of George II. the rights of Baronies became 
obsolete, although by a subsequent Act, in the reign of 
George III., they were permitted for the encouragement 
of fisheries on the sea coast. 

The following are the names of the eleven Baronies 
within the parish: — Glentirran, Dasher or Deshour, 
Shirgarton, Broich, Arnmanuel, Arnbeg, Arnmore, Arn- 
finlay, Garden, Buchlyvie, and Arnprior. 



IT is generally accepted that, in giving names to places, 
our forefathers obviously endeavoured to express 
the nature of the situation and its most prominent 
features, its shape or its size, its relative position, high or 
low, in mountain or valley, the climate or the vegetation 
by which it was surrounded. We have in the names of 
places in the parish, therefore, descriptions or verbal 
pictures of the object. With this general fact before us, 
let us glance at the etymology of some of the names — 

Boquhan — Gaelic Mocuan, plain of the sea or ocean. 
It might also be from the Gaelic Both, meaning 
a " house " or " dwelling ; " and Gaelic C&n ; 
Scots kane ; Eng. rent or tribute : hence 
Boquhan would be the place where the tribute 
was received or kept. Mr. Johnston, in his 
" Place-Names of Stirlingshire," suggests Both- 
bhan, the Gaelic for "white house," which is 
also possible. 

Drum — Gaelic Drom, a ridge. 

Gribbloch — Corruption of Garbhlach, the rough place 
— rugged country, or rough and warm, lying 
to the sun. It is said that Gribbloch was a 
favourite place of meeting in Covenanting times. 
There is a watershed on the lands of Gribbloch, 
a portion of the water going to the eastern, 
another to the western ocean. 

Loch Leggan — The lake in the small hollow. 

BALGAIR — Gaelic Bed, contracted from Baile, originally a 
home, a toun, or farm ; the second part, " gair," 
may be the Gaelic gearr, short, hence "short- 
town " or " farm ; " or it may be Bal-a-gabhair, 
meaning " the goat-farm." 

Castlehill — The upper part of the village of Kippen is 
known by the name of Castlehill. Ages ago a 
castle stood midway in the Burn Loan, on the 
south side, about thirty yards from the roadway 


— the Castle of the " Kingdom " — hence the 
name Castlehill. 

Oxhill may have reference to the manner in which our 
forefathers sometimes computed pieces of land, 
calling thirteen or fourteen acres an ox gang. 

Spittal — There are many places named Spittal through- 
out the county, the name being derived from 
Hospital. Spittal means of the Templars, and 
hospitals were attached to the religious houses 
in the Middle Ages. The first of the Spittals 
was a son of Sir Maurice Buchanan of Buchanan, 
in the time of Alexander III. Having entered 
the Order of Knights Hospitallers, he was called 
in the Scots dialect Spittal. 

Causewayhead — French, Chaussee, the head or termina- 
tion of the Roman Road. 

Cauldhame — Cold, bleak place. The erection of the 
houses dates from the beginning of the nine- 
teenth century, but the place was known as 
Cauldhame before the houses were built. 

Music Hall — Long the residence of the piper or fiddler, 
first called Piper's Hall, afterwards Music Hall. 
In ancient times every village in Scotland had 
its piper, who was employed not only on festive 
occasions, but during the season of harvest, to 
play behind the reapers. Hamilton, in his 
" Elegy on the Piper of Kilbarchan," alludes to 
the practice : — 

" Or wha will cause our shearers shear, 
Wha will bend up the braes of Weir." 

Glentirran — The glen of the small fort, not unlikely 
referring to what we know as the Keir Hill of 
Glentirran. It may refer to the fortification up 
the shoulder of the hill, south-west from the Keir 
Hill, circular in form, with a number of trees 
growing within the space ; but more probably it 
is Gleann Tighearn, the Chiefs Glen, as it was 
here where the chief Baron lived. 


Dasher, from Gaelic Deas, "south," having a southern 
exposure, and ar or air, " field," more properly a 
" battlefield ; " hence " Southfield " or " South- 
battlefield." In old charters the lands along 
the north shore of Loch Tay, which thus lie to 
the south, are called Disher. 

SHIRGARTON — The last part of the word is certainly Gart 
or Gort (old English, Garth, modern English, 
Garden), which originally signifies corn, and then 
an enclosed or tilled field. Shir (Gaelic, Siar) 
is west, so that Shirgarton would mean the west 
field. As terms of direction are relative, it 
would probably be thus called Westfield, in 
relation to Dasher. Gortan is the Teutonic 
Gort, with the Gaelic denomination, an, but in its 
Gaelic form it does not mean an " enclosure," but 
a "green sward," hence Shirgarton will mean 
" West-green." 

Broich, Gaelic Braigh ; Scottice, brae, a bank, or 
acclivity. In front of the old house of Broich 
tnere was a fosse or ditch. 

ARNMANUEL — The word Arn, Gaelic Earran, which 
occurs so often as a portion of names in the 
parish, means a section or division of land. As 
most of the lands with names so beginning lie 
along the slope of the hill side, and parallel, or 
contiguous to each other, they may have been 
portions of a territory which was originally all 
under the same superiority, possibly the ecclesias- 
tical authority of Inchmahome, and for services 
rendered, or for other sufficient reasons, granted 
to vassals of the Priory. Manuel is probably a 
corrupted form of a personal name. 

Arnbeg, the small portion. 

Arnmore, the large portion. 

Arnprior, the Priors portion. 

Arnfinlay — Here might also be included 

Arngibbon — Both Finlay and Gibbon being not unlikely 
proper names. Gibbon, at any rate, in its 


patronymic form of M'Gibbon, is a name still 
common amongst us. 

Garden — If we hold to the use of the letter G in Garden, 
then the same root gart occurs here as in Shir- 
garton, and the termination indicates a diminu- 
tive form, and correlates with Gartmore, Garden 
being the smaller, and Gartmore the larger 
enclosed and cultivated field. But the original 
spelling of Garden was Carden, and, better still 
and more complete, Cardun, which altered the 
case entirely. There can be no doubt about the 
meaning. The word is Calhair-divna (pro- 
nounced Card(y)en), which means "the fort of 
defence or shelter." Carden is the spelling used 
in the old Acts of Parliament. The prefix Car 
is generally the Brythonic Cathair (t is silent)> 
meaning a " seat " or " fort ; " hence Cathair- 
dun would be equivalent to the English Castle- 
hill. There is a Carden in Peebles-shire, and 
another in Fife. Then we have Carnock, 
Carbeth, Cardross, etc. 
We now come to the last barony, 

Buchlyvie — In his " History of Stirlingshire," the Rev. 
William Nimmo suggests ball-cladb-behetk, " the 
field of the burying ground," but this theory is 
doubtful, and in the absence of tradition there 
is much difficulty in getting at the etymology of 
this name. It may mean " the bog beside the 
birches ; " or, if there is any tradition surviving 
associating the place with an ancient battle, 
it may be Buaidh Chlaidhcamh, i.e., "the 
victory of the sword." There is no doubt what- 
ever that, not merely in urns, but also in certain 
knolls in Buchlyvie, human remains have been 
found in large numbers, and this might well 
point to the latter conclusion as the correct 
interpretation. But a lively imagination may 
even trace in the word Buchlyvie a root which 
means poor or needy, and thus recall the rhyme 


and the poverty of the place which Sir Walter 
Scott describes in " Rob Roy " — 

" Ye Baron o' Buchlyvie, 
May the foul fiend drive ye, 
And a' to pieces rive ye, 
For building sic a toun, 
Where there's neither horse meat, 
Nor man's meat, nor chair to sit doom" 

It may also be Both-Chliabhaich (pronounced 
" Buchleevich "), meaning "the wicker-work 
house," a kind of which there were not a few 
in the old days. 


The population of the parish in 
1793 was 1,777 

1801 , 

, 1,722 

1811 , 

, 1,893 

1821 , 

„ 2,029 

1831 , 

, 2,085 

1851 , 

, 1,892 

1861 , 

, 1,736 

1871 , 

, 1,568 

1891 , 

, 1,486 

1901 , 

, 1,456 

The population of the village in 1901 was 356. 


The valuation of the parish, taken in 1777, was 
£5,194 2s. lOd. 

In 1 902 the valuation of the entire parish was as follows : 
In Stirlingshire — 

Eastern Division, £3,664 19 5 

Western Division, 3,423 17 3 

Railways, 916 

In Perthshire — 

Central Division, £4,31 19 8 

Railways, 935 

Total valuation of parish, £13,251 6 4 


By the order of the Boundary Commissioners, dated 
5th August, 1890, that part of the Parish of Kippen 
which formed part of the County of Perth ceased to be 
part of that county on the 15th day of May, 1891. The 
whole of the Parish of Kippen is now in Stirlingshire for 
all purposes except Parliamentary, parishioners residing 
in that portion which forms part of the County of Perth 
still retaining the privilege of voting for a member of 
Parliament for West Perthshire. 


The following tabular statement shows the acreage of 
the parish, with the number of acres under cultivation, 
in pasture, and wood. 

Acres. Tillage. Pasture. Wood. 

6,342 1,420 4,360 562 


THIS facetious "kingdom" was constituted in the /4^<f-/^*/y 
reign of James IV., and came about in the following 
manner. Sir Duncan Forrester of Garden was 
comptroller of the King's household under James IV. 
The Menzies were then proprietors of great part of the 
parish of Kippen, and of some part of that of Killearn. 
Menzies of Arnprior, in that part of the former which is 
included in Perthshire, had a quarrel with Forrester of 
Garden, who, as Menzies was childless, insisted that he 
should either settle his estate upon him by testament, or 
instantly withdraw from it. Menzies applied to Walter 
Buchanan of Buchanan, and offered to leave Arnprior to 
one of his sons if he would defend him from Forrester. 
Buchanan accepted the offer, and sent his second son, 
John, with a dry nurse, to live with his adoptive father. 
On hearing this, Forrester came to Arnprior, in Menzies* 
absence, and ordered the nurse to carry back the child, 
otherwise he would burn the Castle of Arnprior about 


their ears. The woman, however, setting him at defiance, 
and threatening him with her master's vengeance, in- 
timidated him, and he did not make good his word. 


John Buchanan became proprietor of Arnprior, and 
afterwards the noted " King of Kippen," a phrase which 
originated in the whimsical episode between himself 
and James V., who, it may be explained, was fond 
of travelling in disguise under the title of " The Guid 
Man o' Ballengeich," after the steep path leading down 
from the Castle of Stirling. 

The story has been variously put. It is shortly 
this : — The King, with his nobles, was residing in Stirling 
Castle, and having sent a party for some deer to the hills 
in the neighbourhood of Gartmore, on their return to 
Stirling with the venison they passed through Arnprior, 
where they were attacked by the chief, and relieved of 
their burden. On expostulating with Buchanan for so 
ruthlessly taking from them what belonged to the King, 
Buchanan replied that if James was King in Scotland, he 
was King of Kippen. 

The messengers reporting the circumstance to the 
King, he, relishing a joke, resolved to wait on his neigh- 
bouring majesty of Kippen, and rode out one day with 
a small retinue from Stirling. Demanding admittance at 
the palace of Arnprior, he was refused by a fierce-looking 
warrior standing at the gate with a battle-axe sloped on 
his shoulder, who told him there was no admission, as his 
chief was at dinner with a large company, and could not 
be disturbed at that time. 

" Tell your master," said James, " ' the Guidman of 
Ballengeich' humbly requests an audience of the King 
of Kippen." 

Buchanan, guessing the quality of his guest, received 
His Majesty with the appropriate honours, and became so 
great a favourite that he had leave to draw upon the 
carrier as often as he pleased, and was invited, as " King 
of Kippen," to visit his brother sovereign at Stirling. 



THE situation of the village is so sequestered that a 
common saying of the country folks is as above. The 
phrase is the title of the following lines composed by 
Stewart A. Kobertson, M.A., Stirling High School, and are 
supposed to be spoken by a husband to his wife, both 
natives of the " Kingdom," dwelling in New York : — 

" Oot o' the world and into Kippen," 

Eh ! Jean, d'ye mind the braes 
That rise sae bonnie frae the carse ? 

D'ye mind the summer days 
When you and I were bairnies there, 

And never thocht we'd be 
Sae far frae hame in this far land 

Across the saut, saut sea ? 

" Oot o' the world and into Kippen," 

The folks wad laugh and say, 
Losh keep me ! lass, hoo things come back, 

It seems but yesterday 
Since you and I forsook the braes 

And owre the waters came, 
To settle in this weary land, 

Sae far, sae far frae hame. 

M Oot o' the world and into Kippen," 

Eh ! Jean, that that could be ? 
There isna ocht I hae on earth 

But I wad gladly gie 
If only we could tread again 

The paths where ance we ran, 
Where the heather grows on Kippen Muir 

And the braes abune Boquhan. 

Oot o' this world o' noisy streets 

Into that place o' calm, 
Where to the hills men lift their eyes, 

D'ye mind they sang that psalm 
The Sabbath we were kirkit there ? 

Aye, fifty years are gone, 
But ye were then the bonniest bride 

'Tween Kippen and Balfron. 

Oot o' this world o' unkent things, 

Oh ! that we baith could win 1 
And hear the pee-weep on the hills, 

And see the yellow whin, 


And see the bonnie gowans smile 

As if they kent us a', 
And welcomed us to oor ain land, 

The best land o' them a'. 

" Oot o' the world and into Kippen," 

Jean, lass, it ne'er will be, 
The burnie's waters ne'er run back, 

Nor buds the uprooted tree. 
The fecht o' life for us is past 

Forfochen wi' the fray, 
Oot o' the world and into rest, 

Ere lang we baith shall gae. 

The foregoing poem elicited the following reply 

Thy voice across the saut, saut sea 
Has reached the " Kingdom " high, 

And draws from kindly Kippen folks 
The tribute of a sigh. 

That a warm, human heart should long, 

In New York's surging city, 
For breath o' auld warld Kippen air 

Fills all our souls with pity. 

Though times are changed sin' ye left here, 

And auld folk passed away, 
Mayhap as kindly hearts beat now 

As flourished in your day. 

Whatever changes come to pass 

'Mangst men and their affairs, 
Still winds the Forth through fair Menteith, 

Still blow heaven's balmy airs 

O'er Kippen Muir, through garden bower, 
Round many a humble dwelling, 

Or doun the glen, by Dougal's tower, 
The same brown spate is swelling. 

The rushing waters o' Boquhan 
Fall o'er the " Hole of Sneath," 

And rest awhile, from their turmoil, 
In the deep, dark linn beneath, 

Then onward through the red rock bowls 
The "Devil's Cauldron" boiling, 

And round and round, with deaf ning sound, 
The angry waters toiling. 


Anon, through " Belly o' the Whale," 

Where brown trout dart and quiver, 
And laddies throw the baited hook 

To-day — the same as ever. 

Still the shy dipper lays white eggs 

In Cuthbertson's shady glen, 
And the grey wagtail rears her brood 

Where truant schoolboys ken. 

Still slips the burn o'er rocky bed, 

O'er " Leckie's Loup" it dashes, 
Round the Keir Knowe, to join the Forth, 

Through marigolds and rashes. 

Athwart Ben Ledi— Hill of God— 

Falls the weird morning light, 
And heralds each returning day 

Born of the silent night. 

The varied gleams of fairy light 

Still dance on Flanders Moss, 
And glory bathes the ancient oaks 

And mansion of Cardross. 

Still Glenny and Mondouie's slopes 

Look on the " sharp steel sheen " 
That girds the holy island which 

Once sheltered Scotland's Queen. 

O, Hill of God, that doth abide 

While generations pass, 
I to thy heights will lift mine eyes, 

Will sing my morning mass. 

The parson from the manse still views 

The mountains, plain, and skies, 
Still, for men's sins he cannot cure, 

He supplicates and sighs. 

11 Oot o' the world and into Kippen," 
Far from the rough world's din, 
May your spirit come o'er the saut, saut sea 
To rest with your kith and kin. 


THIS hitherto dull and cheerless station has recently 
undergone a complete transformation, a large 
selection of plants and choice flowers, producing 
every shade and variety of colour, being artistically 
studded on, around, and in eveiy available nook and 


corner of the platform ; while borders in semi-shaded 
spots are profusely filled with Polypodium Vulgare. 
Ornamental vases, beds and mounds of various designs, 
edged with blaes and white pebbles, blue and golden- 
coloured violas, etc., adorn the centre of the platform; 
while in the background, stretching the entire length of 
the boundary fence, are rows of superb varieties of sweet 
peas, in the centre of which rises the artistic hoarding 
of Messrs. Munro & Jamieson, of the Observer Office, 

Although passengers, tourists, etc., are still bowled 
along the track at the same slow speed as fifty years ago, 
yet tourists and others alighting at this newly made 
miniature paradise will hesitate and ponder ere they are 
again heard to exclaim they have come " oot o' the world 
and into Kippen." 



THE "Kingdom" having for centuries enjoyed the 
high distinction of possessing a Royal ruler, it is 
no wonder that aspirants to honours in a less 
degree loomed on the horizon, and it is with little surprise, 
therefore, that about the year 1880 we find a full-fledged 
magnate bearing the civic title of " Provost of Kippen " 
appearing in our midst. Some villagers, probably envious 
ones, went the length of saying that the title was self- 
conferred. Be that as it may, Provost Welsh enjoyed the 
privileges of the title unmolested by opposition for about 
ten years, when a rival in the person of Provost M'Niven 
endeavoured to depose him from office, and a bitter feud 
for supremacy existed between them for several years, each 
holding on tenaciously to the title. In order to enable 
the villagers to better understand who was the real and 
only Provost, Provost M'Niven caused a spring of excellent 
water to be conveyed from one of the fields on his farm to 
the road leading to Kippen Station, where he erected 
a drinking fountain for travellers, marking the spot by 


building in the wall an iron tablet bearing the inscription, 
" Provost M'Niven's Well." 

The demise of Provost M'Niven in 1897 left Provost 
Welsh again in the undisputed possession of the Provost- 
ship, and, the better to secure his tenure of office, as a 
precedent several villagers assembled at Kippen Cross on 
the first day of January, 1900, and elected him Provost of 
the " Kingdom " for the ensuing year, there being no 
other nominations. On the first of January, 1901, a 
number of villagers again assembled at the Cross, and the 
spokesman having called for nominations for the office of 
Provost, only one candidate appeared — Mr. David Young, 
Claylands, and Mr. Young was therefore unanimously 
elected. Since his appointment, Provost Young has 
proved, by many deeds of philanthropy, he has the interest 
and welfare of the " Kingdom " at heart. Not only does 
he distribute annually seasonable gifts of potatoes and 
other fruits of the husbandman amongst the poor, but 
shortly after his election he raised by subscription a 
sufficient fund to enable him to place a number of well- 
appointed seats in convenient nooks around the village, 
where the weary toiler can spend a summer evening and 
enjoy his pipe and evening paper, and where also the 
visitor and careworn legislator of this progressive " King- 
dom " can pause and rest amidst splendid scenery, and 
muse on Kippens coming greatness. 


On 10th August, 1894, a Local Government Act was 
passed in Parliament, by which a Parish Council was 
established in every parish, taking the place of the 
Parochial Board, which administered the Poor Law 
(Scotland) Act, 1845. Previous to this Act the adminis- 
trators of the Poor Law Act were for the most part 
representative of property, but now the Parish Council 
are elected from among the electors, and retire at the end 
of three years, but are eligible for re-election. Regarding 
the powers and duties transferred to the Parish Councils, 
it has been simply a case of exit Parochial Board, enter 


Parish Council, with power to provide or acquire suitable 
buildings and public offices to carry on their business. 
In addition to administering the Poor Law Act, the 
Council have charge of the providing and maintaining of 
public recreation grounds ; have power to protect rights-of- 
way ; to hold property and bequests for the benefit of the 
parish ; have certain powers under the Public Health Act, 
1887, and also with regard to allotments ; have the right to 
make complaints regarding unhealthy dwellings, under 
the Housing of the Working Classes Act, 1890 ; and of 
looking after the repair of public highways. 

Eleven councillors are allotted to Kippen Parish. 
The first Council, elected on 2nd April, 1895, consisted of 
the following gentlemen : — 

Duncan Buchanan, Forth Vineyards, Kippen. 
Admiral Campbell, C.B., of Boquhan, Kippen. 
John Drysdale, Fairfield, Kippen. 
Andrew Dewar, Arnprior, Kippen. 
Daniel Kennedy, Wood Merchant, Buchlyvie. 
James M/Phie, jun., Grocer, Buchlyvie. 
James Macfarlane, Oxhill, Buchlyvie. 
Alex. M. Gardner, Cashley, Buchlyvie. 
James Stirling, Esq., of Garden. 
James Weir, Blacksmith, Buchlyvie. 
Thomas Welsh, Beechwood, Kippen. 

Chairman — James Stirling, Esq., of Garden. 


Andrew Buchanan, Residenter, Buchlyvie. 
John Drysdale, Arngibbon, Arnprior. 
Robert Dougall, Post Office, Kippen. 
Andrew Dewar, Arnprior, Kippen. 
James Dick, Joiner, Buchlyvie. 
John Monteath, Esq., of Wright Park, Kippen. 
Rev. John A. Macdonald, Buchlyvie. 
Thomas M'Ewan, Land Surveyor, Buchlyvie. 
James Stirling, Esq., of Garden. 
Thomas Syme, Strathview, Kippen. 
Thomas Welsh, Beechwood, Kippen. 

Chairman — James Stirling, Esq., of Garden. 



The Parish also returns one representative in their 
interests to the County Council, who is elected at the 
same date t*nd place as the Parish Council. 

The first County Councillor, Admiral Campbell, C.B., 
of Boquhan, and the present, James Stirling, Esq., of 
Garden, were elected without opposition. 


With the passing of the Elementary Education Act, 
1872, the old parochial system of teaching became extinct, 
and a system which produced an inestimable privilege to 
teachers and taught passed away, the pupils under the 
old regime having been well grounded in a few subjects, 
instead of being washed with a dozen. But since the 
introduction of the Act, the Educational Department has 
considerably revised and amended the general working of 
the measure, and teachers now possess a wider latitude 
and more freedom from code restrictions than when the 
Act first came into operation. For ages the parish has 
been productive of sons and daughters who have acquired 
high scholarly attainments, as also brave, loyal, and 
industrious citizens, who have contributed not a little to 
the welfare of the empire. 

Five members constitute the Board, who retire at the 
end of three years, but are eligible for re-election. The 
first election of a School Board for the Parish took place 
on Saturday, 29th March, 1873, at Arnprior School, con- 
siderable enthusiasm being displayed by the electors. The 
following gentlemen were elected members of the first 
Board : — 

Henry Fletcher Campbell, Esq., of Boquhan. 
Daniel Fisher, Esq., of Ballamenoch. 
Rev. Patrick Thomas Muirhead, F.C. Manse, Kippen. 
George M'Farlane, Esq., Buchlyvie Station. 
James Stirling, Esq., of Garden. 
Chairman — Henry Fletcher Campbell, Esq., of Boquhan. 


John Drysdale, Arngibbon, Arnprior. 
D. H. Mack, Banker, Buchlyvie. 
Stephen Mitchell, Esq., of Boquhan. 
James Stirling, Esq., of Garden. 
Thomas Syme, Builder, Kippen. 
Chairman — James Stirling, Esq., of Garden. 


THE " Kingdom of Kippen," in addition to being in 
the centre of a historical and interesting neigh- 
bourhood, is now recognised as one of the finest 
summer resorts that can be found in Britain, and within 
recent years the village has become quite a fashionable 
holiday centre on account of its bracing air and picturesque 
surroundings. Its walks are many and varied, and the 
position of the village, like the " city that is set on a hill, 
and cannot be hid," commands one of those views which 
is rarely, if ever, met with in any other part of Scotland. 
Within the last decade or so numerous handsome villas 
have been erected on charming sites on the brow of the 
hill, where busy city residents can retire to spend their 
leisure " far from the madding crowd." This has been 
largely brought about by the improved water supply, and 
the expectation that still further improvements will be 

The use of sunk wells, or " weavers' wells," as they 
were locally defined, necessitating the conveying of water 
from the well to the household by means of wooden 
"stoups," in several instances for distances of over a 
hundred yards, was in vogue till about the middle of the 
nineteenth century. At that period a supply of water by 
gravitation was brought to the village by a private com- 
pany, from springs in the Black Brae, furnishing a supply 
of about 5,640 gallons per 24 hours. At the close of the 
century, owing to the erection of a number of villas fitted 
with modern sanitary conveniences, including bath rooms, 
etc., this supply was found to be inadequate for the 


requirements of the Public Health Act, and a petition was 
presented to the County Council to provide a more 
abundant supply of water, and to form the district into a 
special water district for assessment. After considering 
several schemes, the County Council in 1901 adopted that 
of purchasing the existing works of the Kippen Water 
Company, and augmenting the supply by a bore sunk 
to a depth of 90 feet in a field on Dighty Farm, above the 
village of Cauldhame, which was expected to yield an 
additional supply of 17,280 gallons per 24 hours, the total 
cost being estimated at £1,039 12s. 2d. 

The special water district embraces the villages of 
Kippen, Cauldhame, and Shirgarton. 


A SCHEME for the purpose of providing light in the 
village streets on dark winter nights by means of 
paraffin lamps was promoted in 1898 by Mr. 
William M'Queen, Shirgarton. From the proceeds of a 
concert held in aid of the scheme over half-a-dozen lamps 
were provided, and fixed at various places in the village. 
The proceeds of an annual concert in their behalf, how- 
ever, failed to keep them alight for more than three 
winters, and the village streets have again assumed their 
dark and dismal appearance on winter nights. 



AS we have already noted, the Parish of Kippen is at 
present almost wholly agricultural. It is interest- 
ing, however, to know that for generations a 
successful business was carried on in Buchly vie in tanning 
leather. Indeed, the works, which consisted of some 200 
pools, were in a flourishing condition at the beginning of 
the nineteenth century, while at the same period the 
tambouring of muslin was an important industry in the 
village and its vicinity, upwards of sixty young women 
being employed at this branch in the village alone. 



During the same period there was also a good trade 
done in cotton and linen weaving, the raw material being 
carted from Glasgow by way of Campsie and Fintry, and 
eighty looms were employed in the village, with a corres- 
ponding number in the hamlets of Loaningfoot, Arnprior, 
Arnfinlay, and the village of Buchlyvie. A carrier was 
employed four days a-week conveying the material to and 
from Glasgow. Silk weaving was also carried on for 
several years in the village, and the silk weavers of Kippen 
earned a reputation throughout central Scotland for pro- 
ducing a very superior article. It was when these 
industries commenced, and while they flourished, that the 
village chiefly assumed its present appearance. The manu- 
facture of woollen fabrics was also engaged in well on to 
the third quarter of the nineteenth century by the process 
of handloom weaving. The last handloom worker who 
was known to " ca' the shuttle " in the vicinity of the village 
was Mr. James Lennie of Loaningfoot, old age causing him 
to give up this means of livelihood about the year 1870. 


A very extensive trade was also carried on in the 
district in malting and distilling. This trade preceded 
the weaving industry by a good many years. At one time 
there were five distilleries and sixteen malt barns. A 
distillery of considerable dimensions was situated at Burn- 
side, on the site where the tenement of houses called The 
Pit is now erected. It was subsequently converted into a 
saw pit (hence its present name), following which a portion 
of it was converted into a school. This distillery was 
owned and carried on by one Nicol Shirra. Latterly 
there was only one distillery carried on in the parish, that 
of Arnprior, the tenants being John and David Cassels. 
For many years the average annual duty to Government 
from this distillery alone, according to the " Gazetteer," 
amounted to £17,000. Having been placed by an old Act 
on the north, or Highland, side of the line, Kippen had 


certain privileges for the somewhat free manufacture of 
whisky. By a subsequent Act, however, dated 1793, placing 
the parish on the south side of the line, these privileges 
were withdrawn, hence the reduction of the number of 
distilleries in the parish, if not the decay of the trade. 

The existence of such a large number of malt barns, 
carried on to the middle of the nineteenth century, 
enabled the smugglers of the district to obtain their 
supply of malt without much difficulty. Recent struc- 
tural alterations and improvements have obliterated in 
most cases all traces of where the majority of these malt 
barns were situated. It may be interesting to note here, 
however, a few of the sites, and by whom they were 
owned. Burnside Malt Barn, where the present farm- 
steading of Burnside stands, was owned by William 
Shirra. That house at Music Hall, presently occupied 
as a gamekeeper's lodge, was carried on as a malt barn 
up till 1830 by Alexander M'Lachlan. A portion of 
The Pit, already mentioned, by John Neilson, who also 
had a large malt barn where the villa of Howden Lea is 
now erected. Moirstone, adjoining the site of the present 
tilework, by James Macfarlane. The old, red-tiled, barn- 
shaped house known as Oxhill House stands almost entire 
as in the days of malting, a few internal arrangements 
having converted it into dwelling-houses. The old ruins at 
Kirkhill House, of which a portion is at present converted 
into a hearse house, was used as a large malt steep. 

There were at one time several meal mills in the 
parish, all of which, with the exception of the present one at 
Arnprior, have ceased working, and in some instances been 
demolished altogether, the plough and the reaping machine 
passing over the spot where once they stood. Well might 
some of the natives still alive, on viewing the site of their 
birthplace, exclaim — 

" An old oak tree, or maybe twa, 
Among the waving corn, 
Is a' the trace that time has left 
O' the place whaur I was born. " 


The oldest meal mill we have record of was the Mill 
of Dasher, which was situated in the glen of Boquhan, 
afterwards converted into a sawmill, and continued as such 
until 1896. A meal mill also existed at Newmiln in 1682, 
for we find that one Arthur Dougall, miller at Newmiln, 
was apprehended in that year for attending a conventicle 
at Gribbloch, and carried to Glasgow Tolbooth. This mill 
was burned to the ground in 1855, and never rebuilt. 
The meal mill of Glentirran ceased working about 1880, 
and has since been entirely demolished, not a stone having 
been left to mark its site. The meal mill of Broich has 
also long ago ceased working, but a portion of it is still 
used as a saw mill by the proprietrix of Arngomery. 

A brick and tilework, affording employment to about 
a dozen of the villagers, was carried on at Kippen Station 
till about 1895. The proprietor of Boquhan, Admiral 
Campbell, who had it in his own hands, gave it up at that 
date as a non-paying concern. 

Two creameries, or butter factories, have been estab- 
lished in the parish — one at Fairfield, in 1885, named The 
Fairfield Farming Company, transferred to Arngibbon in 
1899 ; and one at Gateside, Arngomery, in 1899, named 
The Stirlingshire Creamery Company. The farmers in 
the district find a ready sale for their whole milk at these 
creameries at a fairly remunerative price ; while the com- 
panies command a good price for the manufactured article 
in Glasgow, Edinburgh, and other large centres, the butter 
being of a uniform grade and excellent quality ; the by- 
products, buttermilk and separated skim-milk, are also in 
great demand by the dairymen of large towns. 

Through the energetic enterprise of Messrs. D. & W. 
Buchanan, gardeners, vineries for the cultivation of hot- 
house grapes were erected in 1889 at Cauldhame, the 


glass alone employed in their structure covering an area 
of 44,000 square feet. Since the beginning of this industry, 
Forth Vineyard, as it is named, has been a household 
word in the gardening world both north and south of the 
Tweed, and at every important horticultural exhibition in 
Britain its products have generally obtained the highest 
awards, with bunches of grapes weighing from 8 lbs. to 
10 lbs. respectively, although grape-growing for market is 
the primary object of the establishment. In addition to 
grape-growing, the M essrs. Buchanan are specialists in the 
raising and introducing of new grapes, a seedling raised 
by them in 1895 — " Diamond Jubilee " — being now seen on 
every exhibition board, while " Empress of India," " Forth 
Vineyard," and " Queen Victoria," are other seedlings of 
great promise. Another feature of this industry is the 
preserving, by a special process, of their celebrated autumn- 
tinted vine leaves, fronds of maiden-hair fern, etc., which 
keep fresh in vases without water for months, and make 
the most lovely and unique decorations that it is possible 
to conceive of. 


Other industries and trades at present are red free- 
stone quarries in Kippen Muir, carried on by Mr. Thomas 
Syme ; building trade, by Mr. Thomas Syme and Mr John 
Duncanson ; coachbuilding, by Mr. James Forrester ; cart- 
ing and contracting, by Mrs. James Hay, Mr. George Hay, 
and Mr. Robert Davidson; watch and clock making, by Mr. 
Robert Dougall ; boot and shoemaking, by Mr. John Ure 
and Mr George Walker ; tailoring, by Mr. John Gilchrist ; 
smith work, by Mr. John Rennie and Mr. William Duncan- 
son ; joinery, by Mr Thomas Welsh and Mr John Welsh ; 
jobbing and posting, by Mr. John Duncanson and Mr. 
William Stirling ; fleshing, by Mr. William M'Queen and 
Messrs. Bennie & Livingstone ; bakery, by Messrs. John 
Watson & Son; news agency, by Mr. Robert Dougall; 
dealing in china and earthenware, by Mr. James Kenny ; 
coal agency, by Mr. James Stewart, Ladylands ; grocery, 
by Messrs. John Watson & Son, Mr. James Blair, Mrs. 


Alex. Blair, and Mrs. James Stirling ; licensed grocery, 
by Mr. James Buchanan and Mrs. John Mason; hotels, 
Cross Keys, by Mr. Robert Buchanan ; Crown Hotel, by 
Mr. John Duncanson. 


THE advance and general diffusion of agricultural 
knowledge has completely changed the character 
of the district in regard to soil. Apart from 
systematic husbandry, the importance of thorough 
draining and trenching, where the land was wet, began 
early to be understood, but it was only when the laird 
found it convenient to do the work at his own expense 
that any progress in this direction was made, for, however 
willing the tenant might be to have his ground improved 
by tile draining, it was rare that he could command the 
funds. During the eighteenth century an immense im- 
provement was effected in agriculture in the parish, con- 
sequent upon the introduction of the cultivation of clovers 
and artificial grasses and of turnips. Rents increased at 
least one-third by the close of the third quarter of the 
century, and also kept steadily rising during the last 
quarter, through the operation of the high prices prevail- 
ing during the French and Continental wars. 


The position of the laird was most favourable, as his 
income had greatly increased, largely through his own 
active participation in the new agriculture. The laird of 
that day might well be termed a country squire; he 
usually farmed a considerable area himself, was in all 
respects a practical farmer, and usually a pioneer in 
matters of agricultural improvement. His amusements 
and recreations were neither expensive nor ultra refined, 
and, as a rule, he lived on his estates and spent the greater 
part of his surplus income in their improvement, and 
took a very active part in the amenities of rural life. The 
position of the laird of the present day is decidedly inferior 
to that of his predecessor of the eighteenth century ; his 



amusements and habits have become more expensive, but 
in the rivalry with the aristocracy of commerce he has 
often had to take second place. He is no longer 
practically conversant with farm cultivation, and where 
the management of the estate is wholly committed to 
agents the old relationship which survived the abolition 
of the feudal system is gradually dying out. 

The farmer was a man of ruder and rougher type 
than is to be generally met with at the present time. He 
rose with the lark, wrought with his workers in the fields, 
was blessed with but little more education than they, but 
he possessed most of the solid comforts of life without any 
of its elegances. He rarely travelled far from the parish, 
and his world was very circumscribed, but the exigencies 
of the then cultivation needed little knowledge of what 
is now termed scientific agriculture, and, comparatively 
ignorant though he was, he made money. The farmer of 
to-day belongs to a new order, although here and there 
men of the old stamp may be met with, especially on 
small crofts. The imperative use of artificial manures and 
feeding stuffs, the introduction of expensive and compli- 
cated machinery, and the approximation of agriculture to 
an exact science, necessitate larger capital and wider 
knowledge. He is much better educated and more refined 
than his ancestors, but in this age of luxury he has 
acquired more expensive habits and some want of relish 
for physical labour. He may not make much money, but 
he lives well, and possesses most of the comforts of life and 
a fair proportion of its luxuries. 

The position of the farm servant or ploughman a 
hundred years ago was most unenviable. He wrought 
long hours for a mere pittance of a wage, averaging about 
eight or ten shillings per week, and subsisted principally 
on oatmeal. He was coarse and uncouth, and almost 
devoid of education. To-day he works shorter hours and 


receives double the wage paid to his predecessor, and his 
position has vastly improved. Free education is provided 
for his children, some measure of political power has 
come to himself, and his general habits have materially 
improved, but the cottage in which he lives is often 
insanitary and in some cases woefully deficient in bedroom 
accommodation. The conversion of two or three small 
farms into one large farm has been a means of checking 
the supply of farm servants in the locality, and we find 
the ploughmen forsaking the parish and resorting to 
Glasgow and other populous centres, attracted by higher 
wages and shorter working hours, and also impelled by 
the desire for change which has so largely followed the 
spread of education. The scarcity of suitable servants 
thus occasioned is to a certain extent checking the 
development of dairying in the parish, one of the most 
lucrative branches of modern agriculture. 

Although the main features of agriculture have 
remained seemingly unaltered for many generations, yet 
there are few of the myriad branches into which this 
great industry is split up which do not show proof of 
considerable advancement and improvement, until now, 
we may truly say, our oldest and principal industry in 
the parish has in several ways become truly scientific. 
Not only has it secured the devoted service of men who 
are highly scientific, but the vast body of farmers and 
all others interested in husbandry are learning how to 
put away ignorance and fallacies of many types, and in 
their place are adopting views and methods founded upon 
true principles. For ages the produce of Kippen parish 
has been held in high esteem, but there are few things 
grown which within living memory do not show signs of 
improvement. In most cases the improvement is still 
more marked in the methods of production. At the 
beginning of the nineteenth century the crops in the 
parish generally sufficed to supply home requirements, 
although the produce was small and the quality inferior 


compared with present standards. Several years in the 
early part of the last century were disastrously bad, so 
that prices for cereals ruled high till 1812. At that 
period farmers in the carse lands beneath the village sold 
wheat in Stirling market at 63s. per boll ; but instead of 
poor, thin wheat, often weighing little over 52 lbs. per 
bushel, and running down to 14 bushels per acre, this 
cereal can now be grown from 45 to 50 bushels per acre, 
nearly all of which exceeds 65 lbs. per bushel, the average 
price being 28s. per quarter. 

In earlier times, oats, barley, peas, and beans entered 
more largely than at present into the ordinary food of the 
parishioners, but when these were used exclusively as sub- 
stitutes for wheat, they generally deranged the bodily 
health of the consumer. 

Formerly wheat was frequently divided into two 
classes — the winter, Triticum Hibemum, and the sum- 
mer, T. Astivum. This classification, however, is no 
longer recognised, as it is now well known that the cereal, 
by being constantly sown in the spring, quite changes its 
habits as to time of ripening. The produce of wheat 
sown in the spring acquires the habit of perfecting its 
growth quicker than the produce of the same wheat sown 
in the autumn. In soils containing large proportions of 
sand, or of organic matter, but deficient in clay, we often 
see the young plant very luxuriant at first, but without 
the power to build up its stem, for which a certain amount 
of silica and potash are necessary. Silica and lime are also 
required for the chaff, with potash, phosphoric acid, 
magnesia, and ammonia for the seed. In no other descrip- 
tion of soil will wheat flourish. These substances are 
generally found to exist in clays to a greater extent than 
in other kinds of earth — hence the suitability of the carse 
for this important crop. 

Barley is generally admitted to the second place in 
the order of cereal crops, but our climate and soil being 
as a rule better adapted for oats, the latter take the pre- 
cedence in the farmer's estimation. 

The Scotch, or horse bean, is the principal bean 


grown in the parish, and the method of distributing the 
seed broadcast is practised in the carse lands. 


The machinery of the farm has also shared in the 
general improvement. The manufacture of farm machinery 
and implements has passed from the hands of the village 
blacksmith and joiner into those of great engineering 
firms, who have been able to employ scientific experts to 
develope ideas to the greatest advantage, and to provide 
machinery which render construction much more efficient. 
It would be an impossibility for the higher class of 
machinery to be turned out at the village smithy, and the 
employment of scientific engineers has resulted in the 
application of sound mechanical principles. This has 
affected comparatively simple implements as well as more 
intricate machinery. At the same time our country black- 
smiths have added a considerable number of inventions to 
the list, some of them of great value. 

The primitive home-made utensils contrast strangely 
with the improved agricultural implements of the present 
day. Ploughs in the earlier times were seldom bought, 
but, as a rule, manufactured on the farm. In 1330 we 
find their price one shilling, and between 1361 and 1370 
their value was one shilling and sixpence. The implement, 
of course, was common joiner's work, and subject to no 
demand. Wooden ploughs, wooden harrows, wooden 
threshing implements (flails), and a host of other wooden 
articles were the weapons which our farmers had mainly 
to rely upon in wresting their crops from the soil. 
The material might have mattered less had the imple- 
ments been less crudely constructed. In spite of their 
crudeness, however, there were a great many implements 
and machines in use which embody the principles of 

What see we now in the fields ? Light, easily-drawn 
steel ploughs and grubbers, drill harrows, potato planters 
and diggers, turnip lifters, seed and manure distributors, 
self-binding reaping machines, hay forks and rick lifters, 


also portable steam threshing machines. At the farm 
steading we now have machines which make it possible for 
the first portion of a cow's milk to be churned into butter 
before the milker can strip the cow's udder clean ; also 
incubators for the wholesale hatching of chickens. 

No doubt the merry scene of a band of the young of 
both sexes striving with the hook as to who should have 
the honour of carrying off the " maiden " for the crown of 
the harvest home, was attractive, but although hoeing and 
weeding, and even sheafing, may still be done on our 
smaller crofts in the parish by manual labour, the days of 
the " hairst " field are gone for both hook and scythe. 
Some great feats in shearing were, however, performed 
with the " hook," notwithstanding the fact that the reaping 
machine sweeps down the grain, in regard to time, in the 
ratio of ten to one. One old woman in the parish was 
known to shear with the hook over 400 good-sized sheaves 


The district has now become famous throughout the 
United Kingdom owing to the advancement made in the 
breeding of a superior strain of Clydesdale horses, Mr. 
Andrew Dewar, Amprior, having bred, amongst other 
famous animals of the Clydesdale breed, the sensational 
stallion, " Royal Favourite " (10630). This horse was got 
by the noted Cawdor Cup Champion horse, "Royal 
Gartly " (9844), and his dam was a daughter of the famous 
Keir-bred horse, " Brooklyn " (6547), which fetched £700 
at the Keir sale in 1890. " Royal Favourite " has not 
been much shown, but the illustration we give elsewhere 
proves him to be a thick, well-built, and typical Clydesdale 
stallion. " Royal Favourite " was foaled on 6th May, 1897, 
and was sire of first and second yearling fillies, and first, 
third, and fourth yearling colts at the Glasgow Show of 
1902. Six of his produce won sixteen prizes last year, and 
a yearling filly, " Nellie," sired by him, bred by and the 
property of Henry Gray, Kincardine-on-Forth, won first at 
the Highland and Agricultural Show at Aberdeen in 1902, 
and also won the Female Clydesdale Championship at 


Glasgow Show the same year. He is now owned by Mr. 
Dewar's son, Mr. Peter Dewar, who refused the very 
tempting offer of £3,000 for him in 1902. Other breeders 
of a superior class of Clydesdales who have realised hand- 
some prices are : — 

William M'Keich, Woodend, Buchlyvie. 

George Graham, Faraway, Port of Menteith. 

John More, Fordhead, Kippen. 

James Gray, Birkenwood. 

John Paterson, Wester Frew. 

John Risk, Culmore. 

Particular attention has also been paid to the breed- 
ing of Ayrshire Cattle with considerable success by 
John Drysdale, Arngibbon. 
Arch. Blair, Arnmore. 
John More, Fordhead. 
James Macfarlane, Oxhill. 
James Strang, Knockinshannoch. 

There are thirty farms in Kippen Parish, the largest 
holders of property being — 

Dame Helen Catherine Connal, of Arngomery. 

Stephen Mitchell, Esq., of Boquhan. 

James Stirling, Esq., of Garden. 

John Monteath, Esq., of Wright Park. 

William Galbraith, Esq., of Blackhouse and Littlekerse. 

William Forrester, Esq., of Arngibbon. 

James Harvie Brown, Esq., of Shirgarton. 

James Macfarlane, Esq., of Oxhill. 

Andrew Dougall, Esq., of Angusstep. 

Moses B. Scouler, Esq., of Middlekerse. 

The study of agricultural chemistry is making rapid 
progress among the majority of our farmers of the present 
day, and it is evident that an element of the greatest 



moment in attaining their present advanced position has 
been chemical analysis, which now constitutes one of the 
agriculturist's most useful servants. Under its guidance 
he is taught to prepare and conserve farmyard manure 
satisfactorily. He knows what plant food his soil requires, 
and how best and in what form to apply it. His choice is 
directed in purchasing costly fertilisers and foods, whose 
preparation, again, is largely dependent on help rendered 
by analysis ; moreover, through its instrumentality he finds 
efficient protection from fraudulent and careless dealers. 
As a result of this progressive movement, we now find 
practical men respecting and seeking, rather than slighting, 
well-directed scientific efforts, and whereas a farmer's 
knowledge formerly consisted chiefly of isolated facts and 
rule of thumb procedure, we observe precision and true 
economy extending as the reasons underlying various 
courses of action become more apparent and appreciated. 


KIPPEN Parish consists of a variety of soils, which 
are named respectively carse, dryfield, and moor. 
The first extends along the banks of the Forth, 
the whole length of the parish from Buchlyvie to the 
Bridge of Frew. It is composed of the finest clay, without 
stones, and interspersed with strata of marine shells. 


The following is an analysis of the carse soil : — 

Water, ... ... ... 10 parts. 







Carbonate of Lime, . . . 



Organic matter, 



Oxide of Iron, 



Soluble Salts, 



Soluble matter, 



Loss matter,... 



100 parts. 


The term dryfield is not descriptive of the soil, but is 
used merely to distinguish it from the moor and carse 
lands. Its average depth is six or seven inches. It rests 
on a subsoil of gravel or till, and, springing from the 
valley, abruptly in some places, stretches for the most part 
slopingly — with here and there patches of rich tableland 
well enclosed and tastefully studded with trees — till it 
reaches the ridge, where it joins a moor. Sloping south- 
wards the entire length of the parish, its appearance is 
somewhat cold and bleak in winter, but bright and genial 
when clothed in summer with its robe of heather. What 
is called moor comes to be termed dryfield by cultivation. 


In testimony of the fertility of some parts of the soil 
of the parish, as also the genial nature of the climate, we 
may refer to the grand old yew tree of Broich, now named 
Arngomery. For symmetry and general appearance this 
tree is admitted to be the finest in Britain. Growing on 
the lawn in front of the mansion house of Arngomery, 
it presents a stately and majestic appearance from the 
approach, and it is computed that a party of 160 might 
easily dine under the branches unobserved from the lawn 
outside. In 1858 the girth of trunk of this tree at the 
ground was 14 feet 6 inches ; at three feet from the 
ground, 10 feet 1 inch ; height, 35 feet 4 inches ; circum- 
ference outside the branches, 205 feet. In 1878 a 
measurement was taken by the Rev. W. Wilson, and the 
girth at the ground was 14 feet 9 inches ; at three feet 
from the ground, 11 feet 2 inches; and the circumference, 
213 feet. In December, 1901, we measured the tree. 
The girth of trunk at ground was 15 feet 1 inch ; at three 
feet from the ground, 11 feet 5 inches ; circumference out- 
side the branches, 235 feet. It is therefore steadily 

At Fortingall, in the West of Perthshire, there is a 
large yew tree, considered the oldest in Scotland, but it is 



unshapely ; indeed, it seems cleft asunder, and appears as 
two trees. In Wiltshire, on the property of the Marquis 
of Bath, there is a yew tree, the girth of which at the 
ground is 32 feet ; height, 50 feet ; and circumference out- 
side branches, 164 feet. In the churchyard of Knockholt 
there is a yew tree, the girth of which is 22 feet ; height, 
46 feet 7 inches ; and circumference outside branches, 
202 feet. These trees appear to be higher and thicker in 
the trunk, but the branches of neither of them so spread- 
ing, nor, we should imagine, so handsome or so graceful as 
the tree at Arngomery. 

An ancient Act of Parliament decreed that yew trees 
should be planted in all burying grounds of the Kingdom, 
to furnish material for bows. When the late Mr. Ewing 
took down the old house of Broich, which stood in front, 
but a little west of the site of the mansion house of 
Arngomery, in 1852, he found stones which antiquarians 
pronounced at least 800 years old, and it was inferred that 
probably the tree was of the same age. We do not think 
it is quite so old. Naturalists tell us that the age of a 
yew tree may be arrived at by giving a century to every 
foot of diameter of trunk. It is obviously upon this 
principle that the age of the tree belonging to the Marquis 
of Bath has been determined, and if we apply the same 
rule to the yew tree at Arngomery, its age must be about 
500 years. 

While on a visit to Arngomery in 1849 the late Lord 
Robertson composed the following lines on the yew tree : 

" Ne'er vaunt of blooming shrub, of stately tree, 
The waving of sycamore, time-honoured oak, 
As if their spell might solemn thought evoke, 
Within these changeless shades enshrined there be 
The silent depths of nobler sympathy, 
At dewy morn, beneath the vesper star, 
Tidings may waft, from cloudless realms afar, 
Of times long past unveil the history. 
No record proud proclaims thy mystic birth, 
Thy prime no glimmering legend seems to tell, 
Whether thou wavest o'er unhallowed earth, 
Or at thy feet some Celtic warrior fell, 
Or from the land of dreams enchanted here, 
The mist-born spirits did their temple rear." 



THE villagers of earlier times were of a social, 
intellectual, and kindly race, and genuine brotherly 
love predominated. Families were interested in 
the history and welfare of other families. Births, 
marriages, sickness, and deaths were talked over at all 
firesides, and when assistance was needed it was in most 
cases offered before it was asked. They were also a very 
intelligent class, and devoted much of their spare time to 
reading. In proof of this numerous ancient volumes, 
treating of religion, history, poetry, and philosophy, are to 
be found in the village. 

The weekly newspaper cost sevenpence, and was con- 
veyed to the village by the Glasgow coach, its coming 
being eagerly awaited. Several villagers having clubbed 
together to procure a copy of certain newspapers, they 
assembled in some weaver's shop, where it was read by 
one of them to an attentive audience, who, with penetrat- 
ing sagacity, afterwards discussed the greater social 
questions of their day. 

The majority of the villagers, being feuars, had com- 
fortable dwellings, roofed with thatch, and trim, well-kept 
gardens, in which were grown green kale, cabbage, 
potatoes, etc., and borders of delightful, old-fashioned 
flowers, among which were honesty, jelly flower, monks- 
hood, columbine, primroses, pinks, with clumps of balm, 
peppermint, and apple-ringie. Their food was simple, but 
substantial and abundant. Those who had their feus in 
pasture arranged to have drills of potatoes with the neigh- 
bouring farmers, which they themselves planted, hoed, and 
-carted home in the " back en' " for winter use. At 
Martinmas two or three neighbours joined together and 
bought a " mart " — a fat stot or cow — which any of the 
neighbouring farmers had for sale. It was taken home to 
the village, killed, and divided according to agreement. 
They had usually a fat pig themselves ready for killing at 
the same season, which, along with a well-stocked girnel, 
enabled them to face the stormy days of winter with 


"plenty in the hoose," and thus to some extent they 
enjoyed " the glorious privilege of being independent." 

Social changes have been no less marked in the 
village than those of an industrial character. The sphere 
•of woman has been greatly enlarged, and new theories of 
the relation of the citizen to the State have come into 
vogue the world o'er. In literature, realism has sub- 
stituted romance, while the philosophies of Spencer and 
Darwin have taken the place of that propounded by Sir 
William Hamilton. Even our pulpits are not free from 
-discourses on science and philosophy, in place of the " old, 
old story." In all the walks of science and learning 
changes extraordinary for their extent and character have 
taken place within the past fifty years, probably not sur- 
passed by that of all the past ages, and it is worthy of 
note that the " Kingdom of Kippen " has kept steadily at 
the front in the general march of progress. 



BY various Acts of Parliament the parishioners of 
Kippen have been privileged to hold a number of 
fairs in the parish. When the people flocked long 
ago to the monasteries, or abbeys, or churches on special 
days or festivals, they required, of course, some refresh- 
ment. Hence they brought with them not only food and 
drink, but articles of various kinds for sale. As a general 
rule, fairs were named after the local saint, and a fair held 
yearly in Kippen on the 26th of October was named St. 
Mauvae's Fair, after the saint of the parish. St. Mauvae's 
Well, on the west side of Kirkhill Cottage, in that narrow 
strip of field known as the Kiln Park, takes its name from 
this saint. 

In 1686, William Leckie, the proprietor of the barony 


of Dasher, by an Act of the Estates of Parliament, received 
permission, as also his successors, to hold three fairs in the 
course of the year, likewise the markets on the first three 
Wednesdays of December, on the Castlehill of Dasher. 
The original extract is in the possession of the Gartmore 
family. With the exception of one fair, known as the 
Mid- Wednesday of Kippen, all the others have fallen into 
abeyance. And so, too, have the fairs known as the Gowk 
Fair in April, and four markets at Balgair, in March, May, 
June, and August, and one at Buchlyvie. The June Fair 
at Balgair ranked as one of the most important fairs in 
Scotland. The opening up of the country with railways, 
and the establishing of auction markets in Stirling and 
other centres is responsible for the change. An earlier 
supplication, as it was called, by the Estates of Parliament 
to the heritors and parishioners of the parish of Kippen, 
of two yearly fairs, granted in 1663, runs thus — " That they 
(the heritors and parishioners of Kippen) ly at a far 
distance from any mercat toun, whereby they are much 
prejudged, put to great expenses in going to fairs for buy- 
ing of their necessaries, which otherwayes they would not 
be put to if there were fairs appointed to be holden at any 
place within the said bounds, and therefore humbly 
desireing two fairs yearly might be allowed them to be 
keepit at the said Kirk of Kippen as the supplication 
bears, which being taken into consideration, the King, 
with advice and consent of his Estates of Parliament, doth 
hereby give and grant to the heritors and parishioners of 
Kippen, or where the same shall be situat heirafter, in any 
place of the said paroche, one fair in May the other in 
October yearly in all time coming, with all privileges and 
liberties belonging thereto." 

Frequent attempts were made towards the close of 
the eighteenth century to establish a weekly corn market 
at Kippen, also a weekly market during harvest time to 
engage reapers. The project, however, fell to the ground. 
The railway company now run special trains for the con- 


veyance of live stock to the auction sales which are held 
at Stirling weekly, and grain is disposed of by sample 
packets, often carried in the pockets of farmers, or for- 
warded by parcel post to grain merchants. 


The " Feeing Fair " — for the hiring of farm servants 
— is also on the wane. Fairs held bi-y early at Stirling 
and Falkirk are the principal centres for the engaging of 
farm servants resident in the locality, and are looked upon 
as the great half-yearly holidays of the farm. Many of 
both sexes visit these fairs purposely for an engagement, 
but the majority, having been previously hired, go merely 
on pleasure bent, and join in forming a merry, spirit- 
stirring spectacle in which there is the very extreme of 
gaiety. Everywhere along the public street the swarming, 
streaming mass shout and jostle each other in riotous 
merriment ; the byre girls and dairymaids appear in the 
strongest colours of gala attire, and as they seldom get 
the opportunity of turning out in their best gear, they go 
to Stirling or Falkirk on a fair day, to use their own 
figurative language, " dressed to death," the outing 
generally terminating in a dance, while during the day 
"shows" and merry-go-rounds, if available, receive 
generous support, affording much diversion to the par- 
ticipants, and no small measure of amusement to the 
casual on-lookers. Jolly they are beyond description, and 
form a jubilant throng. A fiddler, above all things, they 
cannot stand : music takes their heels just as intoxicants 
would take their heads, yet, notwithstanding their boister- 
ous behaviour, the great majority of the ploughmen and 
servant lasses who attend those feeing fairs, and share in 
the exuberant hilarities, know very well how to take care 
of themselves. It must be taken into consideration that 
the manners of the country folks are different in degree 
from those of the denizens of cities and towns. Were 
certain city belles — modest Flora, for example, who puts 
the legs of her piano into pretty frilled trousers — present 
to see their rustic cousins at village dances, feeing fairs, 


harvest homes, etc., how their feelings of propriety would 
be shocked. 

The ploughmen of the parish at the present day,, 
however, have, by the cultivation of their minds and 
morals, elevated their characters and increased their power 
far beyond the time when the poet depicted them thus — 

" They toil, they eat, they sleep : what then ? 
Why, wake to toil and sleep again." 



THE oldest club we have any record of in the 
parish is that instituted by General John Fletcher 
Campbell, of Boquhan, in 1794 — and who was its 
first president — called the Gargunnock Farmers' Club, 
which embraces the parishes of Gargunnock, Kippen, 
Stirling, Fintry, Balfron, Killearn, Drymen, Port of 
Menteith, Kincardine, Kilmadock, and that part of St- 
Ninians west of a line from the port of Stirling, seuth to 
Gillies Hill, and from thence, west the north side of Touch 
Hill until it meets the parish of Gargunnock. In 1807 
General Campbell bequeathed to this club the sum of 
£500, the interest of which is laid out in promoting the 
object of the institution. At first the members of the 
society met at Boquhan and other places for the purpose 
of discussing matters of interest concerning agriculture, 
and in 1796 we find members agreeing to send two or 
more horses, carts, and drivers, if called upon, to assist 
His Majesty's troops into the adjoining counties. A 
match was also resolved upon for the ploughing of lea, 
which ultimately took place the following year, the date 
and place of match being advertised at the kirk doors of 
the different parishes in which the club was concerned. It 
was stipulated that the furrows were to be 8J inches 
broad and 4 J inches deep. The first prize was a watch 
with engraving on back, value £4 5s., and was won by 
Henry Redpath ; second prize, watch with engraving on 
back, value £3 Is., won by — Chrystal. Subsequently it 


was resolved to hold two ploughing matches annually, one 
for lea ploughing in early spring, and the other for fallow 
ploughing in July. , No suitable fallow land, however, 
could be found, and ultimately a competition for making 
turnip drills took place at Rashiehill on 26th May, 1807. 
In the following year a prize was offered for the best bull 
over three years old, to be shown and judged at a turnip 
drill competition taking place at Craighead on 13th June, 
1808, the prize-winning animal to be at the service of 
members' stock. It is recorded that only one bull 
appeared at this competition. Later, prizes were offered for 
young stock, both cattle and horses, to be shown and 
judged at Kippen Fair, and success attending this effort 
the event has now become an annual show of live stock 
and dairy produce, held in the first week of June in a field 
near Kippen Station, adjoining Boquhan House. 


President : 

Sir Alan Seton-Steuart, Bart., Touch. 

Vice-President : 

Colonel S. Home-Drummond of Blair Drummond. 

Secretary and Treasurer : John Risk, Culmore. 

Committee : 

Robert Mailer, Redhall. 
John Muirhead, Hillhead. 
John Murray, Munnieston. 
R. Downie, Knock o' Ronald. 

Alex. Inglis, Kepdarroch. 
John Mailer, Woodyett. 
James Paterson, Burnbank. 
Alex. Moir, Nether Carse. 

The following gentlemen have held office as Secretary 
of the Club :— 

Peter Gordon, Gartmore, 1796 

John Galbraith, Kippen, 1799 

Rev. Christopher Tait, Kincardine Manse, 1800 


John Leckie, of Broich, 
R. Banks, of Craighead, . . . 
Robert Paterson, Easter Frew, . . . 
John Paterson, Easter Frew, 
John MacNie, Woodyett,. 
Alex. Buchanan, Whitehouse, . . . 
Thomas Leishman, Meiklewood,... 
Matthew C. Stark, Westerton, Doune, 
John Risk, Culmore, 




THE proposal to form a society for the purpose of 
providing a hearse for the parish was mooted at the 

beginning of the nineteenth century, and a meeting 
was convened for that purpose in the Parish Church of 
Kippen on the 28 th day of June, 1810. Those present were : 
— The Rev. P. Macfarlane, Mr. Key, of Wright Park ; Mr. 
Galbraith, of Blackhouse ; Messrs. John Zuill, Lady lands ; 
Archd. Cunningham, Arnmore ; Andrew Chrystal, Broich ; 
James Dougal, Parks; John M'Lause, Waterside; John 
M'Nee, Arnmore ; John Haldane, Robert Hutton, Alex. 
Harvie, John Haldane, jun., John Neilson, David Miller, 
Kippen ; Andrew Harvie, Braehead ; James Graham, 
writer, Kippen. Mr. Key, president ; Mr. Graham, clerk. 

These gentlemen were all subscribers to a previous 
collection, or fund, raised within the parish for the right 
of recommending two patients annually to the Glasgow 
Infirmary. The minute of this meeting bears that " Mr. 
Macfarlane stated to the meeting that the sum collected 
by the elders and others within the parish, and the money 
sent to himself by non-residing heritors and others, 
amounted to £53 16s. 6d., the total subscriptions made to 
the Glasgow Royal Infirmary ; that of that sum £38 9s. 
had been transmitted by John Leckie, Esq., of Broich, 
conform to the preceding state, and that the balance from 
thence arising, being £15 7s. 6d., had been deposited by 
Mr. Macfarlane in the Stirling Bank. The meeting 
unanimously resolve that the above balance of £15 7s. 6d. 
shall continue to lye in the said bank as the beginning of 
a fund for purchasing a parish hearse, and the subscription 
papers, with the bank receipt for said balance, indorsed 
by Mr. Macfarlane, the meeting direct to be given to Mr. 
Graham to take charge of them." 

It was also resolved to issue subscription papers, in 
order to raise a fund adequate for purchasing a hearse, 
and also a piece of ground, and erecting thereon a suitable 


house for its reception. The following committee was 
appointed to report progress at some future meeting : — 
Mr. Graham (convener), Mr. Key, Mr. Galbraith, Mr. John 
Zuill, Mr. John Haldane, jun. ; Messrs. John Cassels, 
Kepp ; Charles Stewart, jun., and Walter M'Gibbon, 

The next meeting we find noticed was held some nine 
years later, the minute being dated, Kippen, 10th 
January, 1819. There were present on this occasion : 
Mr. Galbraith, of Blackhouse ; Mr. Key, of Wright 
Park ; Mr Graham, of Arnfinley ; the Rev. Mr. Ander- 
son; Mr. John Zuill, Lady lands ; Mr. Wm. Graham, 
Moreston ; Mr. Graham, writer, Kippen ; Mr. Galbraith 
(president). Mr. Graham stated that the £15 7s. 6d., with 
£1 Is. afterwards received from Mr. Wright, had 
accumulated to the amount of £21 18s. 9d., and for £21 
thereof he laid a bank receipt before the meeting. After 
some further business, the meeting recommended Messrs. 
Key and Graham to obtain a report from tradesmen as to 
the expense of building a hearse of two wheels with suit- 
able furniture, and also to obtain a report as to the 
expense of building a house for such hearse, and to ascer- 
tain if Mr. Cassels would give a site gratis for building the 
same thereon. 

After a further lapse of sixteen years we find the 
following meeting minuted : — " At Kippen, and within the 
Parish Church, on this 24 day of March, 1835 years, 
convened in consequence of the intimation aftermentioned, 
viz.: — Present, Dr. Weir, Messrs. John Cassels, David 
Graham of Kirkhill, John Haldane, George Graham, Alex. 
Harvie, Robert Galbraith, Robert Thomson, Andrew Doig, 
James Graham, Walter Moir, John Dougal, Alex. Risk, 
John Rennie, James M'Farlane, Robert Hutton, Robert 
Dougal, and John Galbraith. John Cassels produced 
mandates from 28 subscribers, not present, who reside in 
the western part of the parish. The Convener was 


appointed preses. Dr. Weir moved that an addition 
should be made to the former committee, which motion 
being seconded by Mr. Cassels, the following individuals 
are hereby appointed, viz., Andrew Forrester, Esq., of 
Arngibbon ; William Key, of Wright Park ; John Edmond, 
of Newburn; John Cassels, of Arnprior; Alexander 
Harvie, Kippen; Doctor Weir, Kippen ; William Hutton, 
Burnside; Robert Galbraith, Kippen; David Harvie, 
wright, Buchlyvie; James Risk, of Dunston." Reports 
regarding the cost of a hearse were submitted to this 
meeting, when it is duly minuted that, " In regard that 
the former reports by Messrs. Graham, Buchanan, and 
others regarding the expense of a hearse are held by the 
meeting to be extravagantly high, and that a site for a 
hearse house, with a hearse, and all its furniture, can now 
be obtained at less expense." 

The committee were empowered to make further 
inquiries, and report at meeting to be held within the 
church on the first Monday of May, and, accordingly, on 
Monday, 3rd May, 1835, they again met. Only one esti- 
mate, that from Messrs. Thomson & Buchanan, was given 
in, which stated that they would make a substantial hearse 
for £75. The meeting, however, came to no definite 
decision other than to circulate a further supply of sub- 
scription papers throughout the parish. 

Some delay, however, arose at this stage owing to the 
death of Mr. David Graham, chairman of the committee, 
the documents belonging to the Hearse Fund being in the 
hands of Mr. William Hutton, writer in Stirling, agent for 
Mr. Graham's representatives. 


We also find minutes of a meeting, which read thus: — 
" Upon the 13th day of February, 1836, and within the 
Parish Church of Kippen — present, Messrs. John Cassels, 
Kepp ; John Edmond, Newburn ; Wm. Haldane, Thos. 
Weir, surgeon, Alex. Junkine, Alexander Harvie, James 
M'Donald, surgeon, James Graham, Alex. Buchanan, and 
John Rennie, Kippen — the meeting appoint, in place of 


the deceased Mr. Graham, John Edmond as Chairman,. 
John Cassels and Wm. Hutton as Vice-Chairmen, with 
full powers to call meetings ; also empowers the chairman 
to call upon the heritors at their meeting and get up from 
them the money in their hands. Mr. James Graham was 
also appointed to wait upon Mr. Hutton, Stirling, and get 
from him the papers belonging to the subscribers." 


The providing of a hearse for the parish, which had 
taken almost twenty-six years to accomplish, began now 
to assume a more practical form, as we find from the 
following minute : — " At Kippen, within the Parish 
Church, the 18th June, 1836 — present, Messrs. John 
Edmond, John Cassels, Wm. Hutton, Alex. Harvie, Alex, 
Risk, James M'Farlane, John Haldane, Robert Hutton. 
David Risk, John Fisher, James Kerr, John Rennie, Wm. 
M' Alpine, Robert Galbraith, Thos. Weir, Jas. M'Donald, 
Alex. M'Allister, Arch. Russel, James Wright, and James 
Graham. The committee stated that they some time ago, 
through their chairman, Mr. John Edmond, agreed with 
Messrs. Thomson & Buchanan, in Stirling, to make a 
hearse for the sum of fifty pounds sterling." 

Rules and regulations for the government of the 
society were approved of, these stipulating that all persons 
subscribing towards the purchase of a hearse shall become 
members, and thereafter a payment of two shillings and 
sixpence shall qualify for membership; that the hearse 
shall be at the disposal of members on twenty-four hours' 
notice, on payment of five shillings ; if taken out of the 
parish one shilling extra will be charged for each addi- 
tional mile beyond the bounds thereof; and if out for more 
than twenty-four hours, except in cases of unavoidable 
accident, a payment of 10s. 6d. shall be made for every 
day so kept ; hearse and harness to be kept in good con- 
dition by the society, but if damaged through carelessness, 
to be made good by user ; horse and driver to be provided 
by user ; committee to have discretion to grant hearse free 


of charge to poor of parish. The hearse was placed in a 
house provided by Mr. Cassels, at a yearly rental of 
£2 10s., the appointment of a man to look after hearse 
being left with Mr. Cassels. 


For some years afterwards the society seems to have 
made favourable progress, having a sum amounting to a 
few pounds lodged to its credit in the bank, but at a meet- 
ing held in Arnprior School, on 10th August, 1850, it was 
reported that there was a balance of £2 19s. 9d. against 
the society in consequence of the tax or duty demanded 
for the hearse by the collector of assessed taxes for the 
county. Subscription sheets, together with the money, 
amounting to £10 3s. 6d., collected for the purpose of 
paying the duty, were, however, produced. It was then 
moved, seconded, and unanimously agreed to that the 
hearse should be removed from the village of Kippen, 
where it has been kept for some time, to Arnprior, the 
society undertaking to erect a house for it upon a piece of 
ground obtained from James Stirling, Esq., of Garden. A 
sub-committee was appointed to superintend the erection 
of the house above referred to. The meeting then elected 
James Sands, chairman ; Wm. Ure, vice-chairman ; James 
Zuill, treasurer ; John Graham, secretary ; members of 
committee, Robert Bennet, Archibald Murdoch, David 
Harvie, David Ure, Robert M'Farlane, and Andrew 
Rennie." At a subsequent meeting, however, the proposal 
to remove the hearse from Kippen to Arnprior was 


The general meeting of the society is recorded as 
having taken place yearly at Arnprior School from 1850 
until 1855, while the next meeting recorded is held in the 
Parish School, Kippen, on the 17th day of March, 1868, 
when the committee appointed to examine the state of 
the Kippen parish hearse fund, and to ascertain what 


repairs are necessary to be made on the hearse, met, there 
being present, Dr. M* Donald, chairman ; Messrs. John 
Buchanan, George Harvie, Robert Dougal and Andrew 
Rennie. This committee having examined the hearse, 
found that it required considerable repairs, and on the 
12th day of July, 1869, the committee again met at Kippen 
to consider what measures were to be taken for repairing 
the hearse — present : Dr. M'Donald, treasurer ; J. Graham, 
secretary ; Messrs. John Buchanan, Robert Dougall, sen., 
Andrew Rennie, and Robert Dougall, jun. A resolution 
was adopted to instruct David Cook, wright, Kippen, to 
make the necessary repairs on the hearse, and paint and 
varnish same. The secretary, Mr. John Graham, paid over 
the balance in his hand in favour of the society, and Mr. 
John Buchanan was thereafter elected secretary. The 
society again made headway under the chairmanship of 
Dr. M'Donald, and on his demise the chairmanship was 
taken by Robert Dougall, sen., in 1876. 

In 1881 Mr. John Dougall was appointed secretary 
and treasurer, but the repairing of house for hearse, along 
with the execution of some repairs, including the painting 
and varnishing of hearse, placed a balance on the wrong 
side of the society, and at a meeting convened on 20th 
September, 1888, Mr. Dougall refunded the small sum 
which had been allowed him for his services, so as to 
enable the tradesmen's account to be settled. At this 
meeting Mr. Robert Dougall, postmaster, was elected 
secretary and treasurer, and he advanced a sum to wipe 
off the balance due by the society. 

Compared with the more modern vehicle, the Kippen 
parish hearse is now looked upon as being cumbersome 
and ancient in design, and is only used by those resident 
in the village. The fact of the burying ground being now 
located at some distance from the village necessitates its 
use amongst the villagers more than hitherto ; while those 
resident outwith the village generally obtain a more up- 
to-date hearse from jobmasters in Stirling and other places. 



THERE are three Curling Clubs in the parish, of 
which the oldest is the 

Kippen Curling Club. 
Instituted in 1838. 

Cardross and Kepp Curling Club. 
Instituted in 1860. 

Buchlyvie Curling Club. 
Instituted in 1860. 

Each club is provided with an excellent pond for the 
prosecution of this jovial game. 

Kippen Curling Club, which has a splendid pond 
constructed on the village common, is composed of a large 
membership of enthusiastic and keen curlers. It is worthy 
of mention that the Kippen curlers have earned a reputa- 
tion for miles around as skilful exponents of the " roarin' 
game," having gained, since admission into the Royal 
Caledonian Curling Club, twenty- two of that Society's 
medals out of a possible twenty-nine. A large number of 
prizes, including several medals, are competed for annually 
amongst its members ; while other competitions are 
engaged in with keen rivalry. A poet aptly represents 
them in the following lines : — 

" And they battle for the glory o' auld Kippen 

ilka man, 
And the battle's a' the harder if the rink's 

a' ae clan, 
And they tak' a pride in showin' ony trophy 

they may win, 
Tae the risin' generation, and the elders 

o' their kin." 






Henry Fletcher Campbell, Esq., of Boquhan. 

Vice-President : William Key, Esq., of Wright Park. 

Secretary : James Forrester, of Polder. 

Treasurer : Alexander Buchanan, Kippen. 

Members of Committee. 

Robert Greig. James Millar. 

James Mackieson. William Johnstone. 

And eleven regular members and nineteen occasional. 


Patrons : 

John Monteath, Esq., J.P., of Wright Park. 

Stephen Mitchell, Esq., J.P., of Boquhan. 

Honorary Members : 

Admiral Campbell, R.N., C.B., Wimbledon Lodge, London. 

John Dougall, Peebles. James Mackieson, Kippen. 

William Dobbie, Kippen. 

President : 

Dr. Macdiarmid, J.P., Oakbank. 

Vice-President : 

John Monteath, Esq., J.P., of Wright Park. 

Representative Members : 

William M'Queen, Shirgarton. 

Thomas Welsh, Beechwood. 

Chaplain : 

Rev. J. G. Dickson, M.A., Kippen. 

Treasurer and Secretary : 

Robert Buchanan, Cross Keys Hotel. 

Council of Management. 

Dr. Macdiarmid. 
John Harvie. 
Robert Buchanan. 

Alexander Scouler. 
John Paterson. 
William M'Queen. 

Thomas Welsh. 





Patron : 
H. D. Erskine, Esq., of Cardross. 

Patroness : 
Lady Horatia Erskine. 

President : 
James Stirling, Esq., J.P., of Garden. 

Vice-President : 
Andrew Dewar, Arnprior. 

Representative Members : 
Luke Taylor, Arnprior. John Mackay, Brucehill. 

Chaplain : 
Rev. J. G. Dickson, M.A., Kippen. 

Treasurer and Secretary : 
James Gardner, Schoolhouse, Arnprior. 

Ice Master: 
John Wright, Arnprior. 

Peter Armstrong. 
A. M. Blair. 
James Dougall. 
John Mackay. 

Council of Management : 

Peter Dewar. 
Alex. Napier. 
Alex. Cross. 
John Wright. 

Luke Taylor. 

Honorary Member: 
H. D. Erskine, Esq., of Cardross. 




NO records have been kept relating to the institution 
of this society, but it is believed to have been 
inaugurated in 1860. It has for its object the 
encouragement and promotion of the art of ploughing in 
the district, and is confined to a radius of four miles from 
Kippen Cross. A competition is held alternately on carse 
and dryfield lands, silver cups, medals, and other trophies 
being given annually for work done by the different grades 
of ploughs in use at the present time. 


President : 
Stephen Mitchell, Esq., of Boquhan. 

Vice-Presidents : 
James Gray, Birkenwood. John More, Fordhead. 

Secretary : 
D. J. Muirhead, Middleton of Garden. 

Treasurer : 
Robert Jackson, Mains of Boquhan. 

Committee : 

Andrew Main, Strewiebank. 
George Graham, Faraway. 
John Risk, Culmore. 
Robert Muirhead, Causeway- 

Daniel Paterson, Drum. 
Wm. M'Queen, Shirgarton. 
Wm. Wilson, Fairfield. 
David Black, South Flanders. 




THE object of this club is to hold occasional meetings, 
at such times and places as may from time to time 
be found most convenient, for the discussion of all 
matters bearing on farming interests and agriculture 
generally. The office-bearers when the club was insti- 
tuted in 1894 were : — President, John Drysdale, Fairfield ; 
secretary and treasurer, Alex. Scouler, Middlekerse. 


President : 
John Monteath, Esq., of Wright Park. 

Vice-Presidents : 
Dr. Macdiarmid, Oakbank. 
Robert Jackson, Mains of Boquhan. 

Secretary : 
Alexander Scouler, Middlekerse. 

Treasurer : 
Thomas Syme, Strathview. 

Committee : 

Thomas Hall, Boquhan. 
Jas. Paterson, Wester Frew. 
John Black, South Flanders. 
James Gray, Birkenwood. 
John More, jun., Fordhead. 
John Harvie, Rosebank. 

Duncan M'Owan, Bridge of 

William Hallum, Crawford- 

Samuel M'Queen,Shirgarton. 



Kippen Horticultural Society. 
Instituted in 1885. 

Buchlyvie Horticultural Society. 
Instituted in 1886. 

THESE societies have had a marked effect on the 
cultivation of cottage gardens in the locality, en- 
couraging the production of a superior class of 
vegetables, flowers, etc. An exhibition of flowers, fruit, 
vegetables, dairy produce, and honey is held annually in 
each village, upwards of £40 being offered by the Kippen 
Horticultural Society in addition to prizes in kind, etc. 


President : 
Thos. A. Anderson, of Shirgarton. 

Secretary : 
John Dougall, Main Street. 

Treasurer : 
Robert Dougall, Post Office. 


Patronesses : 

Mrs. Mitchell, Boquhan 
Mrs. Monteath, Wright Park. 
Mrs. Moore, Arngibbon. 
Miss Monteath, Wright Park. 
Mrs. Stirling, Garden. 
Mrs. Colville, Arngomery. 
Mrs. Hunter, U.F. Manse. 
Mrs. Cameron, Kirkhill. 

Mrs. Anderson, Shirgarton. 
Mrs. Dickson, Kippen Manse. 
Miss Clark, Ben view, Kippen. 
Mrs. Gordon, Am Bruaich. 
Mrs. J. W. Campbell, Glen- 

tirran Lodge. 
Mrs. Paul, Glentirran Lodge. 



Patrons : 

Stephen Mitchell, Esq., of 

James Stirling, Esq., of 

J. A. Harvie Brown, Esq., of 

Quarter and Shirgarton. 
John Monteath, Esq., of 

Wright Park. 
William Forrester, Esq., of 

Andrew Dougall, Esq., of 

D. Y. Cameron, Esq., of 

J. W. Campbell, Esq., of 

Rev. John G. Dickson, The 


Rev. Henry W. Hunter, 
U.F. Manse. 

Dr. Macdiarmid, Oakbank. 

Arch. Colville, Esq., of Am- 

Alex. Moore, Esq., of Arn- 

Alex. Paul, Esq., of Glentirran 

George Gordon, Esq., of Am 

James Hunter, Esq., School- 

Rev. D. R. Kilpatrick, Dun- 

Arch. Williamson, Esq.,Aber- 

President : 
Stephen Mitchell, Esq., of Boquhan. 

Vice-President : 
Thomas Welsh, Beechwood. 

Secretary and Treasurer: 
Robert Dougall, Post Office. 

Members of Committee : 

Thomas Hall, Boquhan. 
Peter M'Cowan, Arngomery. 
John Robertson, Shirgarton. 
Arch. Gray, Wright Park. 
John Allan, Gateside. 
John M'Lean, Main Street. 
Wm. Chrystal, Oxhill. 

William Stirling, Kippen 

David Young, Claylands. 
James M'Ewen, Settie. 
George Watson, Main Street* 
Robert Stewart, Oxhill. 



THE parish is not without its hero-worshippers, and in 
1896 — the centenary of the poet's death — the Kippen 
and District Burns Club was instituted, and in 1900, 
four years afterwards, affiliated with the Kilmarnock Burns 
Federation. Anniversary celebrations, however, were held 
for a considerable number of years previous to this. In 
an account of the national celebration of the centenary of 
the poet's birth, on 25th January, 1859, the author of 
" Burns in Stirlingshire " says, " A number of the inhabi- 
tants of Kippen met together to unite their sentiments of 
sympathy and concord with their fellow-countrymen 
throughout the land in doing honour to the memory of 
Scotland's immortal bard. The utmost harmony and good 
feeling prevailed. A number of speeches were delivered 
on topics connected with the prosperity and welfare of 
Scotland, several songs from the works of Burns were 
sung, and the whole proceedings were such as to leave a 
pleasant impression on the minds of all who were present." 
He also states that " The members of the Buchlyvie 
Mutual Improvement Society met, along with a few 
friends, in the Public School, which was most tastefully 
decorated. Mr. John Robertson, who occupied the chair, 
proposed the Immortal Memory. Other addresses on 
Burns were given, and an ode, composed for the occasion 
by Mr. P. Dun, stationmaster, Port of Menteith, was 
recited by him." The Kippen and District Burns Club 
prospered, with almost a hundred members, for about five 
years after its inauguration, but, owing to some slight 
differences having arisen amongst its officials, in 1901 
another club was formed. Besides celebrating the anni- 
versary of the poet's birthday by a social festival, the club 
gives prizes annually to children attending school for 
singing and reciting pieces from the poet's works. The 
production of original poetry in the Scottish dialect is 
also encouraged among its members by offering prizes for 
the best production. 


Office-bearers in 1896 : President, John Drysdale, 
Fairfield ; vice-president, John Harvie, Burnside ; secretary, 
William Chrystal, Oxhill. 


President : 
Duncan Buchanan, Forth Vineyards. 

Vice-President : 
Robert Jackson, Boquhan. 

Secretary : 
William Chrystal, Oxhill. 

Committee : 

John Drysdale, Arngibbon. 

Alexander Scouler, Middle- 

W. J. Buchanan, Forth Vine- 

Robert Chrystal, Fore Road. 

John M'Lean, Main Street. 

John Montgomery, Buch- 

David Young, Claylands. 
Thomas Syme, Arngomery. 
Samuel Thomson, Pointend. 
Thomas Inglis, Burnside. 


President : 
Robert Jackson, Boquhan. 

Vice-President : 
Andrew Main, Strewiebank. 

Secretary : 
Thomas Syme, Strath view. 

Committee : 

John Syme, Arngomery. 
Peter Matson, Cauldhame. 
John Allan, Gateside. 
George M'Queen, Kirkhill. 
George Hay, Burnside. 
George Watson, The Cross. 
David Young, Claylands. 

Alexander Davidson, Cauld- 

Samuel Thomson, Pointend. 

Alexander Trotter, Cauld- 

Archibald Gray, Redgatehill. 

D. J. Muirhead, Garden. 




THROUGH the efforts of John Monteath, Esq., Wright 
Park ; Dr. Macdiarmid, Oakbank, and several other 
local gentlemen, Highland Games were instituted 
in 1898, and have since been held annually in a field adjoin- 
ing the village. A large sum is offered in prize-money, 
with the result that these Games are attended by com- 
petitors from all quarters. Though so recently instituted, 
these sports have already gained a wide popularity, hand- 
some prizes being offered for events open to all comers, 
while a number of contests are confined to a radius of 
twelve miles from Kippen Cross. 


Chieftain : 
John Monteath, Esq., Wright Park. 

Captain : 
Dr. Macdiarmid, Oakbank. 

Secretary : William Dougall, Post Office. 

Treasurer : Alexander Scouler, Middlekerse. 

Committee : 

Duncan Buchanan, Forth 

William J. Buchanan, Forth 

D. Y. Cameron, Kirkhill. 
J. W. Campbell, Glentirran. 
Arch. Colville, Arngomery. 
Peter Dewar, Kepp. 
Rev. J. G. Dickson, The 

John Drysdale, Townhead. 
Wm. Forrester, Arngibbon. 
George Gordon, Am Bruaich. 
Rev. H. W. Hunter, U.F. 


Stephen Mitchell, Boquhan. 
A. Moore, jun., Arngibbon. 
A. Paul, Glentirran. 
Wm. M'Queen, Shirgarton. 
Thomas Welsh, Beechwood. 
David Welsh, Burnside. 
Luke Taylor, Arnprior. 
G. R. Watson, Kippen. 
A. Davidson, Kippen. 
R. Jackson, Boquhan. 
Thomas Syme, Kippen. 
Peter M'Cowan, Arngomery. 
John Wright, Arnprior. 
W. J. Paul, Glentirran. 



THE duty of furthering the moral and social elevation 
of the villagers has not been overlooked, and in 1901, 
through the painstaking interest taken in the 
welfare of the community by the Rev. J. G. Dickson, The 
Manse ; Messrs. D. Y. Cameron, Kirkhill ; George Gordon, 
Am Bruaich, and others, a cheap, healthy, recreative, and 
pleasurable resort is provided in the winter months for 
edification and amusement. The Public Hall being 
engaged for that purpose, is open five nights a-week from 
7 till 10 o'clock. In addition to numerous rational and 
refined amusements, books, periodicals, newspapers, etc., 
are provided for the members. Since its inauguration it 
has proved to be of inestimable value to the district, by 
helping to relieve some of the dulness and dreariness 
which exists in the long winter nights, especially amongst 
the working classes, in almost every country village. 
Among other benefits it tends to bring the villagers 
together, keeps them from the corners of the streets, and 
therefore out of the way of temptation and bad influences, 
and thus, by giving its patrons opportunity for the proper 
education and broadening of their minds, the general tone 
of the inhabitants is sought to be elevated, to the mutual 
advantage of all. 


Convener : Rev. J. G. Dickson, The Manse. 

Vice-Convener : D. Y. Cameron, Esq., Kirkhill. 

Secretary and Treasurer : Mr. J. Hunter, Schoolhouse. 

Committee : 

Dr. Macdiarmid, Oakbank. 
George Gordon, Am Bruaich. 
Rev. H. W. Hunter, U.F. 

W.Buchanan,Forth Vineyard. 
John Robertson, Shirgarton. 
Andrew Kay, Little Kerse. 
William Chrystal, Oxhill. 
Peter M'Cowan, Arngomery. 
William Dougall, Post Office. 

Arch. Macdiarmid, Renton 

J. Gilchrist, jun., Aros House. 
G. R. Watson, Main Street. 
Thomas Welsh, Beechwood. 
D. Macdiarmid, Cauldhame. 
Alex. Welsh, Burnside. 
D. Dingwall, Kippen Station. 
Sam. M'Queen, Shirgarton. 
Alex. Davidson, Cauldhame. 



THE village of Buchlyvie, nicely situated almost at 
the extreme end of Kippen Parish, commanding 
extensive views of the Menteith Hills, Ben Lomond, 
and Ben Ledi, was founded in the early years of the 
seventeenth century. It has the largest population of any 
barony in the " Kingdom," the population in 1901 being 


Created a quoad sacra parish in 1876, Buchlyvie had. 

until the recent union of the United Presbyterian and 

Free Church congregations, three places of worship. The 

present United Free Church was built in 1751, a short 

time after the Secession, which took place from the 

National Church at Stirling, led by Ebenezer Erskine. 

Principally owing to the energy of the late Rev. James 

Berry, for 39 years the devoted and respected minister of 

the congregation, the interior of the church was renovated 

and reconstructed in 1890. The Seceders designated 

themselves the Associate Synod, later the Relief Church, 

then the United Presbyterian Church, which in 1901, 

together with the Free Church, became the United Free. 


Established Church — Rev. John A. Macdonald. 

United Free Church— Rev. G. W. S. Cowie. 

The industry of the district is wholly agricultural, the 
soil of a large portion being of a cold and sterile nature. 
Great advance, however, has been made, both as to 
improving the soil and cultivation of the crops, since the 
time when Sir Walter Scott sojourned with the ancient 
family of Graham, at Gartmore House, while he was pre- 
paring material for " Rob Roy." 

At the west end of the village a fine hall, with ample 
accommodation, was erected in 1884 through the muni- 
ficence of the late Alexander Harvie, Glasgow, a native of 
the village. 



Financial matters are conducted in splendid buildings 
through a branch of the Bank of Scotland, with a well- 
equipped staff. 


Among the places of interest are : — 

Ballochneck, at one time the residence of Lennie, the 
famous grammarian. It was here he wrote " Lennie's 
Grammar," and it is said that he travelled to Edinburgh 
periodically with his books, remaining several days selling 
them himself. The present proprietor of Ballochneck is 
Mr. William M'Onie. 

To the north of the Fairy Knowe, adjacent to the 
farm of Mains, is the spot where the mansion of the Baron 
o' Buchlyvie stood. The Fairy Knowe, or Knoll, about 
forty yards in diameter, is said to have been used as a 
Druidical temple. 

Garry's Hole, a subterranean den lying to the south 
of the village, is said to be where one Garry carried on an 
extensive working still in smuggling days. 

Buchlyvie has, in addition to the ploughing, curling, 
and other societies under-mentioned, numerous clubs 
and associations, including a horticultural society, library, 
mutual improvement society, quoiting, draughts, football, 
and summer ice clubs. 


FOLLOWING the institution of ploughing matches 
in the neighbourhood by the Gargunnock Farmers' 
Club, a society was formed in Buchlyvie in 1835, 
named the Buchlyvie Agricultural Association, for the 
purpose of discussing matters for the encouragement and 
interest of agriculture and the general good of the country, 
and among other matters to have an annual competition 
for ploughing, open to members, who must reside within a 
radius of two miles of the village of Buchlyvie. The first 
competition was held at Blairgorts on 5th March, 1835, 
the winner of the first prize at this match being Alexander 


Risk, Cashley. The society continued the match annually 
on the same lines until 1842, when the district was 
extended to all tenants on the estate of Gartmore. Sub- 
sequently, in 1846, prizes were offered for the best bull, 
and the growing of turnips and potatoes. The following 
year a regular cattle show was instituted. The ploughing 
match and cattle show were carried on by the society 
annually until the disastrous time of the cattle plague, 
which occurred in the sixties, when the ploughing match 
was dropped, the members then deciding to hold a cattle 
show only, which is still successfully carried on, being held 
annually in a field near the village of Buchlyvie. It now 
embraces a much wider area for members than formerly, 
consisting of the parishes of Kippen, Fintry, Balfron, 
Killearn, Drymen, Aberfoyle, Port of Menteith, Gargun- 
nock, and Kilmaronock, and keen competition is annually 
witnessed for prizes offered in the numerous classes. 

The first president of this society was William Lennie, 
Esq., of Ballochneck, compiler of the well-known " Lennie's 
Grammar," the secretary being Mr. Alexander Dun, Kep- 


President : 
Daniel Fisher, Esq., of Ballamenoch. 

Vice-Presidents : 
James Stirling, Esq., of Garden. 
William M'Onie, Esq., of Ballochneck. 
Sir C. W. Cayzer, M.P., Gartmore. 
Stephen Mitchell, Esq., of Boquhan. 
John Stroyan, Esq., M.P., Ochtertyre. 
James M'Killop, Esq., M.P., Polmont Park. 
Euing R. Crawford, Esq., of Auchentroig. 

Secretary : 
Daniel Fisher, Garchel. 

Treasurer : 
James M'Phie, jun., Buchlyvie. 



In 1891 a new and independent society was formed 
for holding ploughing competitions, and named the 
Buchiyvie and District Ploughing Society, confining the 
residence of its membership to the quoad sacra parish of 
Buchiyvie, but in 1897 it extended its area so as to 
embrace eleven parishes, being now open to the counties 
of Stirling, Perth, and Dumbarton, and valuable prizes 
are offered for competition. 


President : Bailie William M'Lay, Glasgow. 

Vice-President : Euing R. Crawford, Esq., of Auchentroig. 

Joint Secretaries : 
James M'Phie, jun., and John Milne, Buchiyvie. 

Treasurer : D. H. Mack, Buchiyvie. 


THIS society came into existence on 19th November, 
1892. A meeting of those interested in the forma- 
tion of a horse-breeding society was held in the Public 
Hall, Buchiyvie, at which there were nineteen gentlemen 
present, representative of the different districts proposed 
to be embraced by the society. Mr. Fisher of Ballamenoch 
was called to the chair. It was unanimously agreed to 
form a horse-breeding society, to be called the Buchiyvie, 
Fintry, and Vale of Menteith Horse-Breeding Society, the 
district to comprise the parishes of Port of Menteith, 
Kippen, Aberfoyle, Fintry, Balfron, and eastern district of 

The objects of the society were to promote and 
further the breeding of Clydesdale horses within its bounds, 
by placing within the reach of members the services of a 
Clydesdale stallion, to be engaged by the society annually 


to travel in the district, on such terms and conditions as 
may from time to time be arranged. 

Mr. Fisher of Ballamenoch was unanimously elected 
president, an office which he has held till the present year ; 
Mr. William Smith, Auchentroig, vice-president ; and Mr. 
Andrew Dewar, Arnprior, secretary and treasurer. 

Mr. Dewar held office as secretary till the present 
year, when he expressed a wish to be relieved, and Mr. 
John Drysdale, Arngibbon, was unanimously elected in 
his stead. The following were elected members of com- 
mittee for the first year, viz., Messrs. Alexander Cowan, 
Fintry ; John M' Gibbon, Faraway ; William Wood, Gart- 
more ; William M'Keich, Woodend ; John Drysdale, Fair- 
field ; James Dougall, Blaircessnock ; Alex. Cowbrough, 
Mailing ; William Fisher, Garchell ; Andrew Graham, 
Tombreck ; Robert More, Mains ; John More, Fordhead ; 
A. M. Blair, Arnmore. 

By the formation of this society great stimulus was 
given to horse-breeding in the district, and that the 
society has faithfully carried out the objects it set itself is 
evidenced by the fact that some of the finest specimens of 
the Clydesdale breed have in recent years been bred in 
the society's district by its members, the progeny of horses 
engaged by the society. Mr. Drysdale, Arngibbon, who was 
the moving spirit in getting the society formed, has great 
reason to be gratified with the success which has resulted. 
The society has invariably been fortunate in the selection 
of its stallions, having had the services of some of the most 
noted prize-winning animals of the day, notably the 
famous " Royal Gartly," the winner of the Champion 
Cawdor Cup, and his no less notable son, " Royal 
Favourite," bred and owned by Mr. Dewar, for which a 
bona fide offer of £3,000 was made a few months ago. 
Whilst all the most enterprising tenant farmers in the 
district have gladly availed themselves of the advantages 
placed within their reach through the agency of this 
society, the fact has to be deplored that many others cling 
to their ancient customs, preferring to use what are termed 
" poaching horses," provided the service fee is low enough 


(this, and not the merits of the animal, being the para- 
mount consideration), rather than have the use of some of 
the finest sires of the day at an initial expenditure of one 
or two pounds more, with the almost certain prospect of 
obtaining ten, twenty, fifty, or even hundreds of pounds 
more for the progeny, as has been borne out in actual 
experience in their midst and before their eyes. 




Patrons : 
William M'Onie, Esq., Ballochneck House. 
Daniel Fisher, Esq., Ballamenoch. 
Colonel Euing R. Crawford, of Auchentroig. 

Patroness : Mrs. M'Onie, Ballochneck House. 

President: Daniel Fisher, jun., Garchel. 

Vice-President: Daniel Kennedy. 

Representative Members : 
^ William Bauchop. Daniel Kennedy. 

Chaplains : 
Rev. John A. Macdonald. Rev. G. W. S. Cowie. 

Treasurer and Secretary : John Milne. 

Council of Management : 

Daniel Fisher. 
Henry Drysdale. 
William M'Quiston. 
William M'Keich. 

James Weir, jun. 
James Kennedy. 
William M'Adam. 
James M'Farlane. 

Duncan M'Farlane. 

Honorary Members : 

William M'Onie. Daniel Fisher. 

Alexander Dun. Col. Euing R. Crawford. 

Rev. John A. Macdonald. 



TO the south of the village is a large tract of waste 
land surrounding the arable possessions of the 
feuars and others, known as the " Common," or 
" Commonry," and which originally belonged to the feuars 
and villagers as Crown lands. One of the most serious 
chapters in the history of our legislators has been the 
gradual expropriation of these commons from the working 
classes, as, originally self-appointed to guard and main- 
tain the rights of the inhabitants of the manors, the 
administrators of the law have used their power to despoil 
the feuars of their rightful inheritance. The lawyers, 
" the conservators of ancient barbarism," as Carlyle truly 
termed them, were good enough to tell the landlord that 
all uncultivated land within the manor was his property, 
subject, of course, to the rights of the commoners. These 
preservers of the peace and champions of law and order 
have indeed " respected " these rights, and in several 
instances overreached them. The matter is neatly put in 
the following well-known lines : 

" It is a sin in man or woman 
To steal a goose from off the common ; 
But what shall be that man's excuse 
Who steals the common from the goose ? " 


At one time the common belonging to the Barony of 
Dasher, otherwise the village of Kippen, reached as far 
back over the hill known as the Black Brae as it was 
possible for the feuars to travel till the weathercock on 
the top of the old belfry in the churchyard was lost to 
sight, that constituting the march to the south. We find, 
however, from documents and charters in the possession of 
Mr. Robert Dougal, Castlehill, that a contract or exchange 
was made between the feuars and the proprietor of 
Boquhan for the southern part of the common, in the 


Barony of Dasher, the portion conceded by the feuars- 
being that part on the south side of the road leading to 
Wright Park. Mr. Dougal has also in his possession a 
sketch drawn by James Auld, Kippen, dated 10th Feb., 
1817, giving the measurement of the existing common as 
9 acres 24 falls 23 ells. About this period a request was 
made by Mr. A. Littlejohn, writer, Stirling, craving liberty 
from the feuars to plant a number of trees on the common, 
but the feuars refused this request, believing, no doubt, 
that ample concessions had already been made. 

The curling ponds and curlers' house of the Kippen 
Curling Club are constructed on Dasher Common. 


Some distance west from the Dasher Common is the 
one known as the Shirgarton Common, comprising a piece 
of waste land extending across that part known as the 
Redgatehill. This common, being in the Barony of Shir- 
garton, is entirely in Perthshire, and the feu charters and 
title deeds in possession of the feuars distinctly specify 
their right to quarry stones and mortar for building pur- 
poses, cut turf and fail in the commons of the respective 
baronies in which they are situated, as also the casting or 
digging of peats in the portions of the peat moss belong- 
ing to the various baronies. 



THE plot of ground at the foot of the Burn Loan, 
adjoining the farmhouse of Burnside, through which, 
according to an old charter, a highway leads from 
Burnside to the high street of Castlehill, was granted on 
lease as a washing or bleaching green to the feuars of Kippen 
for a term of 500 years by Robert Graham of Gartmore, in 
1782, the feuars on their part agreeing to pay sixpence 
yearly. We can, however, find no account of this rent 


having ever been collected. Originally this washing green 
was double the size that it is at present. Some years 
after the green was acquired, at a meeting of feuars con- 
vened for the purpose, it was agreed to enclose the eastern 
half, or portion, of the green with a thorn hedge, and thus 
fulfil the double purpose of preventing the inroad of cattle 
and other animals, while at the same time affording the 
villagers a means of hanging clothes on to dry. The 
feuars, having purchased the thorn plants, planted the 
hedge three feet from the march, on their own property, 
with a view to enabling them to have a footpath on the 
other side, and giving them access to articles that might 
be blown off, and also in order to keep the hedge properly 

On 10th February, 1842, a public meeting of the 
villagers was held on the green for the purpose of appoint- 
ing a committee to act as caretakers, the following feuars 
being appointed : — Robert Dougal, John Shirra, James 
Millar, Robert More, and Alexander Buchanan. Later, a 
dispute and threatened litigation arose in 1846 between 
the Laird of Boquhan and the feuars of Kippen regarding 
the building of a steading wall at Burnside Farm. The 
laird, holding the opinion that the hedge previously 
mentioned was a mutual one, proceeded to uproot a 
portion of it, with the purpose of building a dyke of some 
yards length on the line of same. The feuars in a body 
appeared on the scene, and vigorously protested against 
their hedge being interfered with, and unanimously agreed 
to institute legal proceedings should the work be persisted 
in. Operations were at once suspended, the dyke being 
ultimately built on the laird's own property, three feet 
from the hedge. Some of the old thorn trees can still be 
seen growing alongside the dyke. 




THE Gillespie Memorial Hall was erected by Mrs. 
Honeyman Gillespie, a native of the parish, in 
memory of her husband, William Honeyman 
Gillespie, Esq., of Torbanehill, author of " An a priori 
Argument for the Being of God," and other works. This 
building was originally designed, and, indeed, part of the 
work commenced, to occupy a feu held as kirk property, 
adjoining Helensfield House, but, owing to some legal 
difficulty, it was transferred to the site it now occupies, 
and the work completed in 1877, at a cost of over £2,000. 
This site was given free by the Rev. William Wilson, 
minister of the parish, and mainly owing to his zeal and 
■energy was the work carried through. By a codicil in the 
late Mrs. Honeyman Gillespie's will certain restrictions 
nave been made as to the purposes of this hall, and it is 
specially stipulated that in the event of the Church of 
Scotland becoming disestablished the hall shall then 
become the property of the Episcopal Church of England. 
The ante-room of the hall contains a well-selected library, 
available to villagers and others at a small annual sub- 


The enlargement of the Castlehill School in 1897 
rendered the old Parish School of no further use, and at 
this date a number of the villagers formed themselves into 
a company for the purpose of purchasing "the auld 
schule " from the School Board, and transforming it into 
a public hall. This they succeeded in doing, and the hall 
is now known as the Kippen Public Hall, the promoters 
by their action having to a certain extent met a long-felt 
want in the parish. 



THESE were very numerous in the village at one 
time, and at the beginning of the nineteenth 
century there were no fewer than fifteen vendors 
of intoxicating liquors. The price of whisky was much 
lower than now, and we are informed that it contained less 
injurious constituents than the beverage in use at the 
present day. Pure malt whisky cost from 7s. 6d. to 8s. 
per gallon, while a gill of that stimulant could be had in 
the tap-room of one of these numerous inns, accompanied 
with cakes and cheese, for the modest sum of threepence. 
The principal inn and hostelry in the village was the 
Black Bull, at present occupied as a private dwelling-house, 
and known as Black Bull House ; the next in importance 
being the Crown Inn, also now occupied as a dwelling- 
house, and believed to be the oldest at present in the 
village. The Cross Keys Inn occupied the same site as 
at present, while a hostelry occupied the site where the 
villa of Ben View is now erected, and in the small toll- 
house, immediately opposite (now used as a coal cellar), 
drink was also sold, the place being used as a kind of 
custom or toll-house, and named "The Grotto." The 
toll-keepers at Castlehill and Broich were also engaged in 
selling liquor. 

At several other houses in the village, too numerous 
to mention, intoxicants were sold, and rivalry seems to have 
prevailed amongst the vendors, as it is recorded that 
one publican bearing the name of Andrew Blair, whose inn 
was located opposite the present Cross Keys Hotel, had 
the alluring signboard above his door, " The Cheap Sale 
Shop." The block of buildings, where the Crown Hotel 
and posting establishment is at present, did duty as an 
inn, with schoolhouse attached. 



IN common with other country districts, the "King- 
dom " has had its quota of worthies, whose quaint and 
humorous sayings and doings have been handed down 
from generation to generation. 


ISAAC M'GREGOR was a simple-minded rustic, of a 
most obliging disposition, with a vein of sarcastic 
humour, which he could work with very decided effect 
when occasion required. He rented a small patch of ground 
that fringed the Muir of Kippen, part of the estate of 
Stirling of Garden. Isaac had never seen much of the 
great world. With a couple of horses he contrived to 
keep the thatch over his shoulders and the wheels of life 
in working condition by carrying whisky for the far- 
famed Kepp distillery, the proprietor of which, the late 
'Mr. Cassels, was distantly related to him. Isaac piqued 
himself on his knowledge of horses, and was generally his 
own farrier, whether as respected medical treatment, or 
Arming the hoofs of that noble animal against the tear 
and wear of the road. 

Isaac had been witness to the sale of a horse at the 
fair of Shandon, which, though sold as sound, turned out 
afterwards to have some defect in the hoof. An action 
was raised before the Sheriff, and proof allowed, to show 
that the disease was of long standing, and that the fault 
must have been known to the vendor at the time of sale. 
Isaac was summoned to Dunblane to give evidence before 
the Sheriff in favour of the defender. The agent em- 
ployed by the pursuer was as pompous a " quill-driver " as 
ever scribbled on parchment or small pott. Peter 
Dudgeon, for that was his name, boasted that he had a 
more complete knowledge of the English language than 
any practitioner in sheriff or burgh court, from the Gram- 
pians to Cheviot, from his having the whole of Johnson's 


dictionary at his finger ends. The words selected by 
Peter for common use were remarkable more from the 
quantity of the alphabet employed in their construction 
than from their adaptation to the idea meant to be con- 
veyed. Peter thought to dash Isaac, and so confuse him 
at first, that his evidence would want coherence, and 
therefore be rejected. 

The officer called out, " Is Isaac M'Gregor in court ? " 

" Yes, sir I " shouted Isaac, in a voice like the report 
of schoolboy artillery. 

" Come forward, then." 

Peter threw himself back into his seat and looked 
terror, at the same time displaying a frill of cambric of 
extraordinary depth and longitude. 

" Your name is Isaac M'Gregor — is it ? " 

" The minister ance ca'd me that, and I haena had ony 
reason to change't since ; but ye needna speir my name, 
for ye hae kent me ony time this twenty years." 

" It is only for the information of the court." 

" Gif that be a', you're abler to tell them than I am — 
you're glibber in the tongue." 

" Very well ; gentlemen of the court, the deponent's 
name is Isaac M'Gregor, a most enlightened, raticinating, 
and philosophic carter, from the bloody mires of Loch 
Leggan. Notice that, gentlemen! Do you know any- 
thing about the vending, transtullation, or transfer of the 
quadruped in question ? " 

" I didna bring my dictionary in my pouch this day, 
or else I micht hae been able to spell your meaning ; 
maybe, my lord judge, ye'll be able to explain what he 
means, for to me there's just as muckle sense in the 
blether o' the heather blutter ! " 

" He means to ask, witness, do you know anything 
about the sale of the horse, the subject on which you are 
summoned here." 

" Thank you, my lord. Yes, I ken that the horse was 
selt to Jock Paterson there ; and he appeared to me to be 
weel worth a' the siller he gied for him." 

" Well, my sexagenarian friend, Isaac," resumed Peter, 


" how do you know, or how can you satisfy your mind as 
to the validity of the testimony upon which your powers 
of perception have chosen to arbitrate so temerariously ? " 

<; Och, man ! it would tak' you a long time to ken as 
muckle about horses as I dae ; you would need to gang out 
and eat grass wi' them for seven years, like auld Nebuck- 
adnezzar, afore ye learnt your lesson." 

Peter was fairly put out, and got into a violent rage 
— " My lord, I have asked a plain question, and I must 
demand a categorical answer, or I shall move that the 
witness be committed for contempt of court." 

"I would advise you, Mr. Dudgeon," said the judge, 
" to put your questions in a more intelligible shape, and I 
have no doubt but the witness will give you a respectful 

" That sairs ye richt, Peter," said the imperturbable 
Isaac, " an' gin I had you in the Muir o' Kippen, I would 
let ye fin' the wecht o' that shakle-bane alang the side o' 
your head, and mak' thae hornshottle teeth in your mouth 
dance the Dusty Miller. Ony mair to speir, ye manifest 
piece o' impudence ? " 

" What do you know about the value of a horse ? " 
resumed Peter. 

" I wonder what I should ken about if I didna ken 
about horse — I may say born and brought up among them 
— mair than ye can say, Mr. Peter, o' the profession ye hae 
ta'en by the hand." 

" Have you made it your business to become 
acquainted with the veterinary art, whether as applied to 
the general anatomy of the horse, or the moral and 
physical habits of this useful animal ? and to attain the 
requisite degree of knowledge, have you studied carefully 
the article on that subject in the ' Encyclopedia 
Britannica?' and, most particularly, as in the minute of 
detail on this subject, have you bought of your bookseller 
a copy of the work entitled ' The Horse,' published under 
the sanction and patronage of the society denominating 
themselves The Society for Diffusing Useful Knowledge, 
and made it your study by night and by day ? " 


" Hech, sirs ! nae wonder, Peter, that you're blawing 
like a bursting haggis, after a' that blatter o' words ; you'll 
hae pitten a' the lair ye e'er got at the college in that 
speech, I'se warrant; ye mind sin' you and I were at 
Claymires schule thegither, what a poor, fushionless, whey- 
faced shawp o' a creature you war, baith in soul and body, 
and that you couldna spell your ain name ! " 

" Do you know, then, anything about the diseases 
that horses are predisposed to ? " 

" Lang- winded is no' ane o' them at ony rate." 

" From your knowledge of the veterinary art, and the 
profound attention that you have bestowed on the subject, 
would you presume to say that a horse's hoof might be the 
seat of any latent, unmanifested ailment, disease, malady, 
gangrene, or tumour, protected though it be by the crust 
or wall of the foot, without being visible to the ocular 
faculty ? Now ! " 

" Did you hear the thunder doon there, lads ? Ye 
may be verra thankfu', Mr. Dudgeon, that ye haena mony 
teeth left in the front o' your mooth, or thae big words 
could never hae gotten out." 

"Really, Mr. Dudgeon," said the judge, "you are 
taking up too much of the time of the court by useless 
preliminaries. If you have any of your young men in 
court, would you allow one of them to take up the 
examination ? " 

" Very well, my lord. William, take up this brief, or 
case, and further interrogate that incorrigible carter." 

" Witness ! the next question in my brief, or case — 
and recollect you are still upon oath — is, Do you suppose 
it possible for a disease or ailment to exist in the perforat- 
ing flexor tendon, without immediately manifesting itself 
in occasioning lameness by its action in the chamber of 
the hoof?" 

" Weel, my lord judge, efter a', are thae twa no' a 
bonny pair ? as the craw said o' his claws." 

The Court became perfectly convulsed, so that the 
sheriff was himself obliged to finish the examination. 



Isaac had an inveterate prejudice against the medical 
profession, and only in cases of the last necessity would he 
permit them to be called in. This prejudice arose from a 
belief that when subjects could not be procured by means 
of exhumation, the living were drafted on for the necessary 
supplies, and artful stratagems employed to inveigle and 
secure their victims. Any person appearing to be a 
stranger on the street was marked, and in some quiet 
place, whither the object was followed, a plaster was stuck 
over the aperture for breath ; or perhaps he was induced 
on some plausible pretext to adjourn to a tavern and 
partake of some refreshments, when the liquids offered 
were sure to be drugged ; or, if the person were so regard- 
less as to venture with his seducers within the precincts 
of the college, he was led into a small apartment which 
was hung round with attractive pictures, the whole floor 
of which was one trap door or hatchway, so contrived that 
on touching a secret spring the unsuspecting victim was 
in a moment precipitated into a boiling caldron in the 
vaults beneath. 

Possessed with a strong belief in these practices, 
Isaac kept a sharp look-out in passing the College, which 
he was obliged to do every night when in Glasgow, as his 
quarters lay in that direction. On one occasion, as he 
passed the gateway of the college rather late, he affirmed 
that " he heard the clinking of a chain coming skelping 
ower the lintel o' the college entry, and that the cleeks 
verra nearly grippet him by his haunch buttons." 

At another time, Isaac had to visit a friend who 
lived in Castlepen's Close, a little above Blackfriars Wynd, 
now Regent Place, about the hour of dismissal of one of 
the medical classes, and some of his friends, who knew his 
misgivings, said, " There's a boiling this nicht," * at which 
Isaac cocked his ears, well knowing its import. 

* A belief then prevailed that human bodies served for medical as well as 
surgical purposes— that they were literally boiled and used in compounding drugs. 


"Just step east the Wynd there, Isaac," said one of 
the youngsters, "and satisfy yoursel'; just haud your lug 
close to the wa' o' the College garden, and come back and 
tell us what sort o' sound ye heard frae the inside." 

Isaac was down the stair in a moment, and made his 
way to the spot, his imagination heated, and prepared to 
hear what he believed to be transacted within the wall. 
When he returned, he looked aghast, exclaiming, 

" Preserve us a'; gie me a bed wi' you this nicht ; I 
canna gang up the street, for there's the black man* o' 

the College awa' up to ; it's verra becomin', I maun 

say, to hae a blackamoor in that den. Gie me a licht to 
my bed, lads ; I wish I may boo an e'e the nicht." 

The young wags, bent on practical mischief, put into 
the bedroom a black image, set carefully on the head of a 
clothes press, in such a position that it was sure to catch 
Isaac's eye in the dawn of the morning. Just as the day 
began to break, they heard Isaac muttering in horror, 
apparently rising out of bed. They made towards the 
apartment, the door of which had purposely been left 
a little ajar, and there was Isaac standing in the middle 
of the floor addressing the image, in an attitude of the 
utmost horror, "Ye black-looking savage, your maister 
can get naebody in this kintra wi' a white skin on his face 
to dae his wark, but maun send to the West Indies for the 
like o' you — ane o' the generation o' worrie-cows, wi' the 
coom o' your kintra on your face. Come doon and I'll 
fecht ye ; but fling awa' your plasters." The object would 
not consent by nod or otherwise. " Weel, weel," cries the 
half-dreaming Isaac, " it's needless for me tae streck ye, for 
ane that could come through a keyhole, as ye've done, 
could cast ane o' your brimstane scones on my mouth 
afore I could come within arm's length o' ye ; but sin' I'm 
to be chokit, whan you're done wi' my body, gie my banes 
to my brither Jock to be buried at Kippen." 

* One of the Professors of the College had a man of colour as body servant. 



JEAN CAMERON kept a tavern in the " Kingdom of 
Kippen." Jean's house was the meeting-place for 
all the " wet " gentry north of the Bridge of Frew, and 
as sure as Davie Foster, the bellman, had some roup or 
strayed calves to cry, did Robin Buchan o' Boquhapple and 
John Percie of Netherknowe meet on a simmer bees-day o' 
Kippen, after the fair was over, to communicate to each 
other the news " frae their ain toon ends." Not till the 
clock struck twelve would these worthies move, and 
generally by that time they were so completely intoxicated 
that they often mistook one another, and answered to 
each other's names. 

The threat of Dr. Campbell and his session of the 
denial of baptism did not deter these worthies from their 
potations. " Dr. Campbell no' baptise your wean, Nether- 
knowe ! — set him up ! Just gang tae the Port of Men- 
teith, they're no' sae nice there, and you'll get it done 
without ony trouble." 

The road home for both lay for some miles in the 
same direction, so that they " oxtered " each other along, 
and when the balance inclined too much in one direction 
the other opposed an antagonistic force to restore the 
equilibrium ; all this adjustment, however, could not pre- 
vent occasional mistakes. One night in particular, Nether- 
knowe got up to the haunches in a clay ditch, and stuck 
fast, the tenacious till at the bottom holding like glue. 
Boquhapple tried one arm, then another — would not 
move. Netherknowe, like a laired stirk, sat motionless, 
and gave no aid for his own release ; his anxious com- 
panion made still another effort by putting a foot on each 
side of the ditch in order to have more power, but equally 

" An' a sorrow to ye, Netherknowe, will ye no' try to 
help yoursel' — push your feet frae you, man; try to 

" Na, Johnnie, had I no' better try to draw my feet 
tae me ? " 


" Weel, frae ye or tae ye, dae something, man ; I hear 
a fit comin', we'll be perfectly affronted ! " 

"Just sit thee down (quo' Patience in mud), Robin r 
and put thy feet in the goat too ; there's great beauty in 

Robin made another desperate effort to extricate 
Netherknowe, but, not succeeding, abandoned the attempt 
in utter despair. 

" Weel," says Robin, " efter a this desperate strussel, 
it's a frien's part to stick by a frien' in distress — I'll just 
stick wi' ye, Netherknowe — are ye sure ye hae room for 
anither besides yoursel' ? " 

" Oh, ay, Robin, man, there's room in't, dear laddie, 
believe me, for twa." And down did Robin sit, and 
plunged his feet in the ditch, and stuck by Netherknowe 
until some neighbours came up and drew the worthies out 
of their " carse boots." 


IN the thinly populated districts of Scotland, the 
" Smiddy," after the hours of out-door labour are over, 
is the trysting-place for the "tillers of the ground ;" and 
here, amidst noise and smoke, and by the murky gloom of 
the furnace, the sons of the soil discuss all public matters, 
whether national or local. There is always a Robin-Raw, 
a swaggering Bobadil, or a Sawney Munchausen in every 
neighbourhood, who is made to tumble for the amusement 
of the company, and there is scarcely ever any lack of per- 
sons qualified to pull the wires and exhibit the Punch of 
the party. 

At the smiddy of Arnprior, a group such as we have 
been describing assembled occasionally. Tamas, o' New- 
burn, was the Munchausen of the district, and Davie o' 
Garden, the exhibitor. Tamas was somewhat difficult to 
put in motion ; but after having got a sufficient impetus, 
on he went like a stone down the slope — not stopping till 
far beyond the level. 

" Dear me, Tamas, but you are wonderfu' douce the 
nicht ! Did ye rise aff your wrang side this morning ? " 


" Just let me alane the nicht, Davie ; I'm no' mysel* 
ava — ony ither time." 

" Tuts, man, come awa ; we'll no' let yet sit down i' 
the britchen that way. You recollect, Tamas, when you 
gaed to court Lizzie Lucklip, your wife, what a braw lad 
you were ? " 

"I was that, Garden, though I say't mysel'; there 
wasna anither in the hale parish that could haud the 
can'le to me — sax feet three, an' a weel-proportioned 
swankie in every other respect — limbs ! the better o' them 
never cam' oot o' Nature's turning loom. That morning 
that I gaed to gree maitters wi' Lizzie, I had just cam' 
hame frae Murray's-ha' lime-kilns, and aff I set, after 
redding mysel' up, nae doot, ower the croft by Pooburn, 
barefitted — the leas were shoe-deep in water, and the sun 
was glintin' sae laughing-like after the thunder-shower. I 
skelpit ower the rig, every sparge that gaed frae my fit 
was like a harn wab — ou ay, but thae days are awa'. 
Lizzie's deid and gane, and some that she brocht to me 
beside ; my heart aye grows grit when I think on them." 

" Nae wonder, Tamas ; mony a happy day you had wi' 
her and them. Your auld neebor, Lady lands, slippet awa 
the ither day to his lang hame ; ye mind sic horse as ye 
yoked to the swingletrees at Lady lands ? " 

" An' that I dae, Garden, man, when ye mind me o't ; 
they were the horse, just as daft as young couts that never 
had got their tails dockit, weel fed, and as sleekit i' the 
skin as otters. When I used to gang into the trevis to 
gie them their corn, I whiles cam' oot again without the 
neck o' my jacket — just through stark daffing. Sic a 
stramash when they ran awa' wi' me and the ploo at the 
bourtrees yonder ! I held on — you'll no' believe me, 
Dawvit, when I tell ye, that the common gauge o' the fur 
was my pouch lids. I lost grip, and at last sight o' the 
crap o' the stilts, the stanes comin' thundering back past 
my lugs like shoo'ers o' bullets ; and doon I tum'led an' 
the fur aboon me ; the last thing I saw was the points o' 


the horse's lugs. Jock More was passing at the time, and 
helped me out, or buried alive was I, as sure as my name 
is Tamas Langleas, o' Newburn. Jock telt me afterwards 
that his verra een gaed blin' in his heid." 

" But that's naething to the time when they took 
fricht and ran aff frae ye when ye were plooin' on the 
Drum Hill!" 

" Ye may weel say it, Garden ; that was a strussel ; 
never mortal, I believe, ever saw or heard tell o' sic 
anither rin-awa. A bird flew oot o' the hedge beside me, 
and ere I could say ■ woa, Jollie,' crack gaed the thaits, 
and the swingletrees flew owre the craft in splinters, the 
stilts were quivering amang my fingers like fiddlestrings 
— owre the hill the horse flew like lichtnin'. They gied 
siccan a tug when they brak aff, they brocht the ploo 
and me through the hill the nearest — we made up to 
them at the head-rig whaur the hedge keppit them." 


" Thae wis the days ; there wisna ither twa on the 
haill o' the carse, or the braes o' Kippen, could divert 
themselves sooming like us ; Tamas, dae ye mind o' your 
dive to the bottom o' Killorn-linn yon simmer nicht ? " 

" Man, I had maist forgotten that. I had been 
cutting hay a' that day at Laraben, an' it's weel min't — 
muckle Rab o' Angustep was wi' me tae — I thocht I 
micht be nane the waur o' haeing myseP washed, and 
doon I gaed to Killorn-linn, and, thinks I, if ye hae a 
bottom, as the folk say ye hinna, I'll see for myseP this 
nicht. I plunges in, and doon and doon I sinks till at 
las't I lichts at the bottom, and in atween the clefts o' a 
moss-stock ane o' my feet gets wedged. Doon I set the 
ither foot to gie me mair poo'er, and doon it gaes i' the 
mud ! ' Waur and waur,' says I ; ' Tamas, you were aince 
buried alive, and now I think you're to be drowned alive.' 

[Time of total immersion supposed to be 20 minutes.] 

" ' Oh ! ' quo' I to mysel', ' I wish I had taen a blether- 
fu' o' breath doon wi' me ; I wad hae defied your stocks 
and your clay.' I sat doon a wee to rest me, and tried 


again to free my feet ; no ! Hech ! you may be sure my 
hert was playing pittie-pattie when oot o' his den springs 
the king o' the otters — a great big fleckit brute, the size 
o' a twa-year'll stirk. The beast had mista'en my legs for 
twa salmon, but the stock was atween me and him, and 
saved my limbs. The force o' the beast against the stock 
turned me heels ower head, and set me fairly on my feet 
again; and before you could say Jock Morrison! I wis 
aboon the water. Rab o' Angustep had run awa' to 
gather the neebors to rake the linn for me. 


" It's an uncanny place that Clash-brae for bogles. If 
ever I saw ' Auld Nick ' himsel' in my life, it was there 
ae nicht. Deed, Garden, my verra een waters whan I 
think o' what I forgethered wi' on the road mysel' as I 
was comin' owre by the Clash-brae ae winter nicht. I 
had been awa' ayont Cardross, seeing the lasses, an' I'll no' 
say but it micht be weel on in the mornin' when I set oot 
for comin' hame. It was as dark a nicht as ever mortal 
man was oot in; no' a star wis tae be seen i' the lift. I 
would hae defied e'en Loaninfit himsel', wha pretended to 
see faurer afore his neb than his neebors, to hae kent his 
finger frae his thoom, if hauden up afore him. Weel, just 
as I wis passing auld Sandy Keir's, that's dead an' awa', 
an unearthly- looking thing cam' brachling through the 
hedge — gif I could believe my ain een it looked like a 
hurl-barrow on end, makin' its way without the trunn'el. 
My hair stood up like heckle-teeth, and I thocht the verra 
grun' wasna carrying me. I tried to gang fast, there wis 
the thing at my side; I keepit mysel' back — aye at my 
side; gang fast or gang slow, there wis the thing, maist 
rubbiDg claes wi' me. The sweat was breakin' owre my 
broo' like lammer beads ; but I wis aye preserved. As I 
passed auld Robin Kay's at the tap o' the loan, lang Davie 
Cassel's cock crew, and the thing just gaed through the 
braid side o' Cassel's maut barn in a flaucht o' fire. 
The neist mornin' I heard that just aboot the same time 
auld Donald Stalker had gane tae his rest." 



IT was the fate of Watty M'Claws, of Whistlebare, in the 
Barony of Buchlyvie, to be connected in marriage 
with one of those viragos who turn out to be 
anything but answering the description of " helpmeets." 
Girzie Glunch, the maiden name of Mrs. M'Claws, was of 
an excessively irritable temperament — " the verra turning 
o' a strae," said Watty, " is aneuch to set her up in a 
bleeze like a tap o' tow." When in her barleyhoods, she 
was apt to enforce her commands with upland emphasis, 
and Watty came in for a due share of this practical 
elocution, and proved himself as quiet and submissive a 
disciple as ever fell under a " continual dropping " since 
the days of the Man of Uz. 

One morning Watty came home to his breakfast at 
the usual time, expecting to find his " cog and soup " set 
out awaiting him, but such was not the case ; the materials 
had not got fairly aboil, and Watty, doffing his Campsie 
grey broad-brim, sat him quietly down to exercise a little 
more of his cardinal virtue — patience. After waiting a 
considerable time, while the process of boiling and stirring 
was going on, Watty remarked that "he thocht the 
parritch might be dished now, and that they were surely 
weel aneuch boiled." 

" Jist rest you there," said Girzie, " there's nae corn 
shaking at this time o' the year." 

The man of Whistlebare saw in his Xantippe's 
gathered brow and pursing features a design, as he 
thought, to provoke a similar ebullition in his temper to 
that of the contents of the pot, and quietly gave way, 
meekly observing that he " feared the parritch couldna be 
ready in time for him this morning," and moved as if to 
go away. 

" Sit still there ; I'll no' dish them for your pleasure, 
or ony ither body's, though they should boil till they micht 
be made thoom raips o'. Sit doon, ye hungry haveral 
that ye are ; I'll gar ye channer there, ye pigthankfu', 
guid-for-naething sumph," and ere Watty wist, the spurtle 


rebounded frae his haffet, leaving a goodly streak along 
the cheek backward of the material preparing for break- 

" Hoots, woman, I would rather tak the ' spurtle' grip 
mysel' than see you afflickit wi't ; dear me, Girzie, I wadna 
hae believed, gif I hadna seen't, that the spurtle could hae 
lifted up sae muckle ! We should let naething be lost, ye 
ken," continued Watty, scraping his temples, and tasting 
the quality, " I think they may do for the boiling part, but 
hae they no* a thocht ower muckle saut in them, Girz ? " 


A WORTHY named Davie Gow o' Claylands, was a 
regular attendant at "diets of examination," as 
they were called, a custom which has now entirely 
disappeared. The clergyman announces from the pulpit 
on Sabbath that the hearers in a certain locality will 
attend at some farmhouse for the purpose of being 
examined as to the amount of their religious knowledge, 
and also for giving them religious instruction. 

The late Dr. Campbell, when in Kippen, was very 
regular in such appointments, as well as rigid in examina- 
tion. One of these meetings took place at Clony, in 
David's neighbourhood, and at the conclusion, as usual, a 
somewhat stylish dinner was prepared for the minister 
and such of the neighbours who were present as were asked 
to dine with the family. The guidwife invited Davie " to 
tak' share o' what was gaun wi' the minister." 

"Oh, you maun just excuse me the day, mem," 
replied Davie. 

"Deed I'll no* excuse you this day, Dawvit. Ye 
needna mind, man ! You're aye sae blate, and as mim as 
a May puddock ! Come awa', noo ; naebody but your 

" Oh, no," still continued Davie ; " really, I wish you 
would take my excuse. I canna come, for, ye see, Andrew 
Square is wi' us makin' some claes for the weans, and 
it widna be guid manners to leave Andrew to himsel'." 


" Tuts, come oot o' that wi' you — gif a' your hums 
and ha's were hams and haggises, the parish o' Kippen 
needna fear o' dearth." 

" Weel, mem, since ye will hae me to be neighbour- 
like, ye ken, mem, that ye have aye mustard on your 
table. Noo, I canna sup mustard." 


IN ancient times minstrels were a privileged class in 
the locality, and were generally accompanied by a 
gillie who carried the harp. On one occasion one of the 
fraternity, named Willie Dawson, accompanied by a youth 
as attendant, visited the house of Broich. As the night 
closed in, the household began to congregate round the 
blazing hearth, forming a circle, in the centre of which sat 
the minstrel and his harp-bearer. 

" What youth is this you have brought with you this 
time, Willie ? " asked the guidman of the house. 

" The young varlet you are pleased to enquire after is 
the son of a cock-laird near Buchlyvie, who, having per- 
formed the part of one of the satyrs at a grand banquet at 
Stirling, has taken it into his head to make his son a 
minstrel, and for that purpose has placed him under my 
care ; but a bee might as well attempt to teach a black- 
beetle the way to make honey as I to instruct this 
smeddomless smaik in the divine art of minstrelsy." 

" What may thy name be, youngster ? " queried the 

" Jist plain Watty M'Owat," said the youth, putting 
his hand to a tuft of hair that hung over his forehead. 

" How old are you ? " 

" I'm aulder than ye wad think, or I wad like to tell ; 
my mither used to say that my growth was a' downwards, 
like the toad's tail." 

" I would think thee old, and, from thy readiness of 
tongue, to have a little of the toad's head as well as his 
tail about thee." 

" We Buchlyvie folks hae aye a word or twa to gie 


to a frien , J though we should hae naething else to spare 

"Now, Watty, would you not rather have been a 
tailor than the trade you have taken up?" 

" I'm no' fond o' tailoring ; it wadna agree wi' me to 
be cowrin' a' day, like a taid, on my hunkers." 

" There are rich tailors in Stirling, my lad ; tailors 
who have built bridges and gifted them away with the 
spirit of princes. There's Spittal for instance." 

" Spittal ! Odd, that's him that made my faither's 
deil's dress ! " 

" His satyr's dress, thou goose's head ! " 

" Weel, weel ! ony head ye like, but they ca'd it his 
deil's dress aboot Buchlyvie." 

" How did they know anything about it at Buchlyvie ? 
And how, in the name of wonder, did your father come to 
enact such a part in court ? " 

" I'll tell you a' that, if you'll gie me time. My faither, 
wha is a wee daft whiles — I may just as weel tell you 
mysel' as let other folks do't — is kent owre a' the kintra- 
side as 'Davie Souple-shanks,' and he is weel named, as 
for jumpin' and dancin' he hasna a match on a' the braes 
o' Kippen. The Coort folks heard o' him, and sent for 
him to Stirling; and he took me wi' him as a kind o' 
gillie to tak' care o' Weasel (that's oor shelty), and dae ony 
odd things he wanted. And feth, I had plenty tae dae, for 
beside himsel' I had some ither deils, or satyrs, as ye ca' 
them, to wait upon." Watty related his experiences of 
waiting on the satyrs at Court, and having finished, the 
laird requested that he should now tell them how he 
happened to engage with the minstrel. 

" Weel, since you maun ken," resumed Watty, " it was 
nae doing o' mine. My faither's deil cantrips had become 
the common clash o' the kintra-side, and I had made some 
rhymes about him, which he was weel aneuch pleased 
wi' at first, till some o' his companions put him in a pet 
about them, and then I had hardly a dog's life o't. So 
the next time Willie Dawson cam' roond, he ca'd on my 
faither, and the twa made a bargain, but what it was I 


never heard; but, when Willie's gaun awa', my faither 
claps his harp on my back and turns me adrift, wi' nae- 
thing but a gowf in the lug to keep my pouch wi'." 

" That seems hard usage, my young friend," said the 
laird ; " but let us hear the rhymes, and then we'll be able 
to say more about it." 

At the urgent desire of the laird and all present, 
Watty placed the harp between his limbs, and, after 
twanging away for some time, by way of symphony, and 
in waggish imitation of his master, sung the following 
lines to an air which, though not altogether devoid of 
music, had yet so strong an expression of the ludicrous 
about it, that it seemed to the ears of the company very 
much like an attempt to burlesque the lofty profession of 
which the unwilling youth had thus been constrained to 
become a member : — 


Nae doubt ye'll hae heard how daft Davie M'Ouat 

Cam' hame like a deil, wi' an auld horn bouat ; 

His feet they were cloven, horns stuck through his bonnet 

That fley'd a' the neibours whenever they looked on it ; 

The bairns flew like bees in a fright to their hivie, 

For ne'er sic a deil was e'er seen in Buchlyvie. 

We had deils o' our ain in plenty to grue at, 
Without makin' a new deil o' Davie M'Ouat, 
We hae deils at the scornin', and deils at blasphemin' ; 
We hae deils at the cursin', and deils at nicknamin' ; 
But for cloots and for horns, and jaws fit to rive ye, 
Sic a deil never cam' to the toon o' Buchlyvie. 

We hae deils that will lie wi' ony deil breathing ; 

We're a' deils for drink when we get it for naething ; 

We tak' a' we can, we gie unco' little, 

For no' ane'll part wi' the reek o' his spittle ; 

The shoul we ne'er use, wi' the rake we will rive you ; 

So we'll fen without ony mae deils in Buchlyvie. 

Though han'less and clootless, wi' nae tail to smite ye, 
Like leeches when yaup, fu' sair can we bite ye. 
In our meal-pock nae new deil will e'er get his nieve in, 
For among us the auld deil could scarce get a leevin'. 
Tae keep a' that's gude tae ourselves we contrive aye — 
For that is the creed o' the toon o' Buchlyvie. 


But deils wi' Court favour we never look blue at, 
Then let's drink to our new deil, daft Davie M'Ouat, 
And lang may he wag baith his tail and his bairdie 
Without skaith or scorning frae lord or frae lairdie ! 
Let him get but the Queen at our fauts to connive aye — 
He'll be the best deil for the toon o' Buchlyvie. 

Now, I've tell't ye ilk failin', I've tell't ye ilk faut ; 
Stick mair to your moilin', and less to your maut ; 
And aiblins ye'll find it far better and wiser 
Than traikin' and drinkin' wi' Davie, the guizer ; 
And never to wanthrift may ony deil drive ye, 
Is the wish o' wee Watty, the Bard o' Buchlyvie. 

"Well, Watty, since that is your name," said the 
laird, " instead of a gowf i' the lug, had you been a son of 
mine, I would have turned you adrift with as many marks 
of the lash on your back as there are strings to the harp. 
Shame upon you for a graceless vagrant, that could thus 
lampoon the bones that begot you." 

" Hoolie a wee, sir. Souple-shanks, as they ca' him, 
is nae faither o' mine ; he's only my steppy, my mither's 
gudeman, like; and, except being a M'Owat, he's no' a drap 
o' blood related to me, and I think the usage was just 
hard aneuch to ane that had served him sae lang, and got 
naething but cuddie's wages, heavy wark and sair banes, 
for his trouble." 

" That indeed alters the case a little ; but surely you 
scandalise your townsmen when you say they cannot sit 
with a friend without drinking." 

"Sit without drinking! They're no' exactly my 
words, but they're no' far frae my meaning. Did you ever 
see a leech sit on a timmer leg, sir ? " 

" No, youngster, I confess I never did." 
"Weel, then, till ye see a ferlie o' that kind, never 
expect a Buchlyvie man will sit whaur there's nae drink 



SEVERAL chalybeate springs have been found in the 
parish, the chief of which is located in the bed of 
Boquhan Burn, about twenty yards above the rail- 
way bridge, and close to Kippen Station. No effort, 
however, has been made to secure any of these springs. 
The spring in the bed of Boquhan Burn, having undergone 
a comparative analysis, contains chloride of magnesium, 
sulphate of lime, chloride of calcium, and common salts, 
which ingredients are efficacious for many complaints. It 
is to be hoped that something may yet be done to con- 
centrate these springs, and thereby add considerably to 
the inducements that attract tourists and visitors to the 


THE " Kingdom " has the distinction of being the 
only parish in Western Stirlingshire provided with 
a cemetery. Owing to no proper plan or chart 
being kept of the old graveyard adjoining the village, 
complaints became numerous regarding interments made 
therein, and in 1893 a public meeting of the parishioners 
was convened to consider what steps should be taken to 
remedy the grievance. Ultimately it was resolved to 
present a petition to the Sheriff of Stirling to have the old 
graveyard closed, subject to certain conditions, and subse- 
quently a cemetery, available to the whole parish, was 
formed on the southern slope of the hill close to the Keir 
Hill of Drum, about a mile from the village. This new 
cemetery was opened for interments in 1895, at a cost 
of £1,400, the Parish Council levying an assessment of 
Id. per pound on all owners and occupiers of lands and 
heritages to defray the cost. 



TRACES of old Roman military roads have been 
discovered in several places in the locality. Some 
years ago, in Flanders Moss, on the opposite side 
of the Forth, a Roman way was discovered, twelve feet 
broad, and formed by trees laid across each other. The 
trunks of the trees were squared by the axe at each end, 
with marks of bolts, or pins, in the longitudinal sleepers. 
Its direction was from south-east to north-west, and quite 
probably this is a continuation or branch of the Roman 
highway which has been traced from England north to the 
Grampians. Leaving England at the Solway, it passes 
through Annandale and Clydesdale to the neighbourhood 
of Glasgow. From the vicinity of Glasgow it takes a 
direction eastward across the isthmus between the firths 
of Clyde and Forth. It enters upon Stirlingshire at 
Castlecary, and is found again upon a rising ground at 
Larbert. Passing south of Stirling, it takes a westerly 
direction, and a branch has been found to cross the Forth 
at the Ford of Drip, near Craigforth, turning northward by 
Dunblane. It is not improbable that the road found in 
Flanders Moss may have been a branch of this highway, 
taking its course direct from Stirling, and crossing the 
Forth at the Ford of Frew. 

On the south side of the Forth, to the east of the 
curling pond of the Cardross and Kepp Club, a similar 
road was discovered some years ago, composed of logs of 
wood identical to those found in Flanders Moss. 

In addition to these, there is a castellum at Cardross, 
with a ditch and inner and outer rampart pretty entire, 
which is undoubtedly Roman. In 1830, a copper kettle 
and a number of coins were found within this castellum ; 
these are now in the museum of the Society of Anti- 
quaries in Edinburgh, and have all been pronounced 
Roman. Roman historians frequently refer to the forests 
which the armies of that people had to cut down, and 
marshes which they had to drain, or make roads through, 


in their marches towards Caledonia, and it would appear 
that they employed not only their own soldiers in this 
work, but compelled, with much rigour, such of the 
natives as fell into their hands to labour with them. 
These remains point undoubtedly to the fact that the 
growth of the moss in the valley is subsequent to the 
making of these roads or causeways. 

In more modern times, the road or lane presently 
known as the Back Road formed a part of the principal 
military thoroughfare between Stirling and Dumbarton. 
Tracing it from the Brig of Broich, now called Arngomery 
Bridge, this road took a southerly direction, passing near 
to the farmhouse of Dub, where the mansion house of 
Shirgarton now stands, and from there we follow it in the 
old lane, passing the old Black Bull hostelry, with its 
courtyard and stables, and then past the old Parish 
Church and graveyard, until we reach the cross roads and 
the old Crown Inn, with its old-fashioned, crow-stepped 
gables, relic of a bygone age. Proceeding from the Crown 
Inn we follow it across the bridge at Burnside, and on 
until it enters the old lane now known as the Acres 
Loan, and from there in an easterly direction until it 
crosses Boquhan Glen, by what is now called "the auld 
brig of Boquhan," then past the hamlet of Burnton, until 
we reach the village of Gargunnock. The present Stirling 
and Dumbarton Road was made and connected with the 
old road, at a point near Arngomery Bridge, in 1828. 

There are also several old roads in the vicinity of the 
village, which have been constructed by the residents of 
the various baronies for the conveyance of peats from the 
moss in the valley, the longest of these being in the 
barony of Shirgarton. Leading from Shirgarton Moss, 
adjoining the farm of Strewiebank, it takes a southerly 
direction up the steep brae known as the " Balloch," 
beneath Shirgarton House, where it joins the old military 
Stirling and Dumbarton road, and, striking off at Cairn 
Cottage, it leads up past the farm steading of Shirgarton, 
and close to the site of the ancient mansion house of 


that name, and from there up through the hamlet of 
Cauldhame to the Redgatehill and Shirgarton Common, 
and on to the holdings of Muirend, Dunimerg, etc., now 
in the estate of Wright Park. 

The peat road for the barony of Dasher leads 
from the Dasher Moss, on Middlekerse farm, passes 
close to the side of that farm, and joins what is now 
locally known as the " Cottage Loan," till it reaches the 
foot of the Keir Knowe, where a divergence takes place, 
the one portion continuing round the base of the knowe, 
past the kiln park, till it joins the station road, leading to 
the village of Kippen ; the other, branching off at the foot 
of Cuthbertson Glen, crosses the brae park (a part of this 
section is now effaced by the plough), and takes an 
easterly direction through the top of Crawfordstone Glen, 
till it merges into the road leading past the farm of 
Wester Braehead to the hamlet of Music Hall. 

The Broich and Arnmanuel peat road leads from the 
Broich Moss, adjoining the farm of Fairfield, past the 
south side of Arngomery mansion house, through the Glen 
of Broich, and on to the barony of Arnmanuel. 

There is also another old road, very seldom used 
now. Tracing it from a point where it branches off the 
old Stirling and Dumbarton road, a short distance east 
from the hamlet of Music Hall, it crosses through the 
Dasher Common, the Black Brae, the baronies of Shir- 
garton and Arnmanuel, joining the Kippen and Campsie 
road a short distance above the sandstone quarry in 
Kippen Muir ; while numerous other old roads and rights- 
of-way are fast becoming obsolete in the parish. 



THE advent of railways, affording a cheap and speedy 
mode of travelling, has supplanted the old-fashioned 
stage-coach. Up till the year 1850 a coach ran 
between the Crown Hotel, at Kippen Cross, and Glasgow 
three days a week, the fare being four shillings and sixpence 
for the single journey. It is needless to add that only the 
well-to-do class could participate in this, at that time, 
luxurious mode of travelling ; indeed, we have been told by 
some old residents of the village that it was quite a common 
occurrence in those days for the women folk of the district 
to set out early in the morning across the hill, by way of 
Fintry, Crow Road, and Campsie, and from thence to 
Glasgow, do their shopping, and return by same route 
that evening with their purchases, thus covering a 
distance of 48 miles. 

The following is also related : — A native of the 
village, William Donaldson by name, long since deceased, 
migrated to Glasgow, where he obtained employment. 
Previous to his departure from the village he had centred 
his affections on one of the many " weel-faured " lasses 
that abound in the locality, and, as the love of olden 
times laughed at milestones as well as locksmiths, he set 
out regularly, and one evening every week for two years 
stepped across the hills by the route already referred to, 
and, having spent an hour with his sweetheart, was back 
in Glasgow, as he told the writer, when the six o'clock 
bell was ringing, ready to begin his daily toil. He after- 
wards married this lass, and settled down on a farm in 
the vicinity of the village. Compared with the facilities 
afforded by locomotives, bicycles, and motor cars, com- 
ment is unnecessary on the love-making episodes of the 
twentieth century. 

A four-in-hand coach also passed through the village 
from Balfron to Stirling every Friday. 



IN the first edition of the " Gazetteer of Scotland " we 
find that the Church of Kippen belonged anciently to 
the Monks of Cambuskenneth ; but according to 
another, and more probable, account it was, in 1238, 
erected by an ecclesiastical convention, acting under the 
authority of the Pope, into a perpetual canonry in the 
Church of Dunblane, which dates from the seventh 
century, and was founded at St. Blane, in Bute ; whereas 
Cambuskenneth, or, as it is called in the old writs, 
Kambuskyne, dates back only to the twelfth century. 
It was founded by David I. for monks of the order of St. 
Augustine, and was dedicated to the Virgin Mary. The 
lands connected with Cambuskenneth were never exten- 
sive, but were considered valuable. Hence the rhyme — 

" A loop o' the Forth 
Is worth an Earldom in the North." 

According to a Pictish chronicler the Church of 
Dunblane was, during the reign of Kenneth Macalpine, 
destroyed by fire by the Britons of Strathclyde. For many 
years after, the church was vacant, most of the posses- 
sions being seized by seculars and appropriated to their 
own use. Mr. Wilson, in his " History," says that next to 
nothing was known of the Church of Dunblane till the 
time of David I., who founded the bishopric, and in his 
preface to the "Catalogue of Scottish Bishops," Bishop 
Keith refers to a judgment of the Pope's delegate in a 
question regarding the bishopric of Dunblane in the 
year 1238. In that year Bishop Clement of Dunblane, 
being moved by the utter decay of the bishopric, repaired 
in person to Rome to represent to the Pope that the 
Church of Dunblane, having been vacant for more than a 
hundred years, almost all its possessions had been seized 
by secular persons, and that, although in process of time 
several bishops had been appointed, yet by their weakness 
and indifference the possessions thus appropriated had not 
only not been recovered, but even what remained to them 


had been almost entirely alienated, in consequence of which 
no one could be induced to take upon himself the burden 
of the episcopate, and the church had thus remained 
without a chief pastor for nearly ten years. The then 
bishop,- when appointed, had found the see so desolate 
that " it cannot be espied where he might lean his head 
in the Cathedral Church," that there was no collegiate 
establishment, and that in this unroofed church the 
divine offices were celebrated by a rural chaplain ; while 
the Bishop's revenues were so slender that they scarce 
yielded him maintenance for half a year. On the 
authority of Skene, in his "Celtic. Scotland," this 
document was mixed up with a question between the 
same Bishop and the Earl of Menteith. 


THIS question may have referred, along with other 
alienations, to the Church of Kippen, for we find in 
the chartulary of Cambuskenneth Abbey several 
charters, the translation of which is given by Mr. Wilson 
as follows : — 

" James, by the Grace of God, King of the Scots, to all men 
throughout his land, both clergy and laymen, health. Know that 
whereas we, moved by our filial affection, having regard to the fact 
that the Parish Church of Kippen, in the diocese of Dunblane, and 
situated within the County of Menteith, together with the right of 
patronage to the same, was bestowed on the most blessed and 
glorious Virgin Mary and on our Monastery of Cambuskenneth — 
likewise on the Canons who therein serve God, and who shall in 
future serve Him, by Walter, sometime Earl of Menteith, and 
Alexander, his son, as a free perpetual gift for the health of their 
own souls, and of the soul of Matilda, whilom wife of the said 
Alexander, and for ceremonious obsequies performed in our said 
monastery, whereas we also bear in mind how the aforesaid Church 
and its patronage have existed from long past and beyond the 
memory of man outside the jurisdiction of our said monastery, we 
also, to the honour of God Almighty and of the aforesaid most 
glorious Virgin, His Mother, Mary, and for the health of the souls 
of our late most noble father and mother, James III., and 
Margaret, his wife, of blessed memory (to whom God be reconciled), 
whose bodies rest in the said monastery — also for the offeriDg of 


prayer on behalf of our Father and Mother aforesaid and on behalf 
of ns and our successors through all time coming, do approve, ratify, 
confirm, and by this our present charter do, on the part of ourselves 
and our successors, approve and for ever confirm that donation 
made by the said whilom Walter and Alexander in favour of our 
Monastery of Cambuskenneth and of the Canons of the same, in the 
matter of the said Church of Kippen and its patronage. And 
moreover we have now given and granted every lawful title which 
we have had or have to the aforesaid Church and the patronage of 
the same in respect both of its rectory and vicarage, together with 
all and sundry tithes, produce, offerings, emoluments, revenues, 
and all just perquisites whatever, having regard to the same as a 
free and perpetual gift. In witness of which we direct our great 
seal to be placed on our present charter." 

Then follow a number of witnesses. The Charter 
concludes thus : — 

"Done at Striveling on the sixth day of the month of April in 
the year of our Lord one thousand four hundred and ninety six in 
the eight year of our reign." 


This Charter was confirmed by James IV. in his 
Parliament in the following deed, part of which is also 
from the Chartulary of Cambuskenneth : — 

" In the name of God, Amen — Be it clearly known unto all by 
this present public deed, that in the year of our Lord's incarnation, 
one thousand four hundred and ninety- six, in the twenty-third day 
of the month of June, in the fourth year of the pontificate of our 
most holy Father and Lord in Christ, Alexander VI., by the Divine 
Providence, Pope, in the Parliament of our supreme Lord the 
King, held and begun at Edinburgh in the Parliament House of the 
same, on the day above mentioned — our aforesaid Lord the King 
appeared personally in presence of the three estates of the 
realm and of one the notary public — and the undermentioned 
witnesses— and these our supreme Lord the King did of his own 
special grace and at his own proper motion give, grant, confirm, and 
approve the gift, grant, etc., which he had formerly made to the 
venerable father in Christ, Henry, Abbot of Cambuskenneth, and 
to his monastery, in the case of the Church of Kippen in its 
Charter sealed with his own great seal, to the effect that the said 
Church of Kippen shall in all time to come remain with the same 
abbot and monastery and their successors for ever— in consideration 


of daily rites and prayers to be ever performed and offered on 
behalf of the souls of his late father and mother, of his own soul and 
the souls of his predecessors, and successors whomsoever." 

Then follow the names of persons present. 

Immediately after this a long and bitter dispute arose 
betwixt the Bishop of Dunblane and the Abbot of Cam- 
buskenneth regarding the Church of Kippen, the Abbot 
claiming the Church by virtue of a gift from King James 
IV., whilst the Bishop maintained that it was a prebend 
or canonry of Dunblane, and could not therefore be 
bestowed by the King as a gift. An amicable arrange- 
ment, however, was come to by consent of the King, and 
engrossed in a charter, as follows : — 

" To each and all the sons of holy mother Church, to whose 
notice the present letters may come, James, by the Grace of God 
and of the Apostolic See, Bishop of the Cathedral Church of 
Dunblane, with consent and assent of the chapter of the same, in 
general chapter as such assembled— health together with the Divine 
Blessing — Know that we have accepted and understood according 
to the following tenor, the specification and agreement between us 
on our side and the venerable father in Christ, Andrew, by Divine 
permission Abbot of the monastery of Cambuskenneth and his 
convent on the other — this engagement .... and agreement 
now made and concluded at the city of Dunblane in the thirteenth 
day of the month of March, in the year of our Lord one thousand 
five hundred and ten, between the reverend Father and Lord in 
Christ, James, by the grace of God and of the Apostolic See, Bishop 
of the Cathedral, Dunblane, with consent and assent of the said 
Church .... regarding the disputes and controversies which 
have arisen, or which may in future arise between the same parties 
in connection with the right to the Parish Church of Kippen, that 
the said Church of Kippen with all and sundry the produce, 
returns, revenues, privileges, and emoluments, which belong or may 
belong to the said vicarage, together with the sum of twenty 
pounds of the usual money of Scotland, to be levied, raised, and 
paid from the produce, returns, and revenue of the said Church 
of Kippen, through all future time, in equal portions, at the two 
usual and customary terms of Pentecost, viz., and St. Martin's in 
winter — be united and incorporated with the usual mansion of that 
prebend, on condition, however, that of the said mansion and 
glebe, half an acre of land together with a small house for the 


reception of the tithes of the said rectory, be held by the monastery 
of Cambuskenneth through all time to come. Moreover, by the 
tenor of these presents the canonry and prebend of Kippen are 
united, erected, created, and incorporated in one canonry and 
prebend of Dunblane — to be called in future the canonry and 
prebend of Kippen — which canonry and prebend shall through 
all time to come be perfectly in the gift and possession and at the 
full disposition of the said reverend Father and his successors, and 
shall belong to them in ordinary right, and the aforesaid venerable 
Father and the convent of the said monastery of Cambuskenneth 
and their successors shall possess all and sundry the produce of the 
rectory of the said church .... on condition of paying the 
said sum of twenty pounds to the said canon and prebendary free 
from any further annoyance. Moreover, the prebendary or canon 
of Kippen, who shall hold the prebend or canonry, shall .... 
be free from the payment of any ordinary or extraordinary dues as 
lately expressed in connection with the Church of Kippen, and 
from the payment of a certain pension of long standing, commonly 
termed the Stal-Silver, paid yearly in times past to the Staltarious 
in the same Cathedral Church of Dunblane, and amounting to four 
pounds, which the prebendary shall be bound to pay— and the 
contracting parties aforesaid have mutually bound themselves in 
the strictest form to faithfully fulfil." 

In testimony of his assent and consent to this agree- 
ment, the private seal of James IV. was appended to it. 
There was appended to the same document, besides, the 
common seal of the Chapter of Dunblane, as also the 
round seal of the bishop of the same, to remain for ever 
with the Monastery of Cambuskenneth. Then follow the 
bishop's signature and the signature of the dean, Walter 
Drummond, and the prebendary, James Wilson. 


THE controversy betwixt the Abbot of Cambuskenneth 
and the Bishop of Dunblane regarding the Church 
of Kippen may have arisen in this way : Kippen 
originally belonged to Dunblane, but, as already indicated, 
was doubtless one of the alienations to which reference is 
made in the complaint of the Bishop of Dunblane to the 
Pope in 1238. Earl Walter of Menteith, or some of his 
predecessors, having seized the church, with right to the 
living, rather than return them to Dunblane, preferred 


handing them over to Cambuskenneth. The condition 
which is made in the transference, viz., a right of sepulture 
at Cambuskenneth, seems strange when we remember 
that his ancestors had founded in the Lake of Menteith 
the Priory of Inchmahome, close to their house of Talla. 
The same chartulary of Cambuskenneth bears what is 
called the last foundation of Abbot and Convent at 
Kippen, which reads thus : — 

" In the year of our Lord 1510, on the 21st day of the month of 
July, in the presence of me, notary public— and of the under- 
mentioned witnesses — that circumspect man, Master Patrick 
Coventre, being present in person, did endow and invest the 
venerable father in Christ, Andrew, Abbot of the Monastery of 
Cambuskenneth, and that discreet man, Sir John Ranaldson, canon 
of the said monastery, with real, actual, and bodily possession of 
the rectory of the Parish Church of Kippen, together with all and 
sundry rights, returns, produce, crops, emoluments, and appurten- 
ances belonging to the said rectory, by producing and delivering 
over the book, cup, and other furniture of the high altar of the said 
Church of Kippen into the hands of the said venerable father and 
of Sir John Ranaldson, according to the will of our most holy lord 
the Pope, and of the charter granted by our supreme lord the King 
to the said abbot and convent regarding the said rectory, and with 
reference to these matters, etc., the aforementioned worshipful 
father, and other aforesaid, covenanted for a deed or deeds to be 
drawn up for their behoof by me the notary public hereinafter 
mentioned. Done in front of the high altar in the choir of the said 
Church of Kippen, in presence of these honourable and prudent 
men, viz., Maurice Buchquhanane, son of the noble Walter 
Buchquhanane of that ilk ; John Knok of Ardmanwell, Alexander 
Forrester of Kilmore, Arthur Steward of Culbeg, Patrick Makgillois, 
John Forestare, and James Harpar, together with many of the 
parishioners. The foregoing by me, Andrew Wilson, notary. 
Witness my hand." 

The only other item regarding the Church of Kippen 
in pre-Reformation times which has been gleaned took 
place in 1489. The Earl of Lennox, keeper of the Castle 
of Dumbarton, having raised an insurrection against the 
government of James IV., took the field with an army of 
two thousand men, and proceeded northward. The King, 
with the Lords of Clydesdale, met at Stirling, and finding 


that Lennox, with his army, was encamped in the neigh- 
bouring parish of Aberfoyle, at a place called Gartalunane, 
on the south bank of the Forth, he hastily collected a few 
followers, and set out to meet the insurgents. During 
the night Earl Lennox was surprised, and he and his men 
completely routed. Next day, on his return to Stirling, 
the King visited the Kirk of Kippen, and, according to 
the accounts of the Lord High Treasurer, gave "ane 
angell " as an offering in thanksgiving for his success. 
An angel was an English gold coin reckoned in value 
about twenty-four shillings. This same King, who is 
associated so much with the parish, was he who fell at 
the Battle of Flodden, where 

" The flowers o' the forest were a' wede away." 

Tradition assigns the site of the church and graveyard in 
pre-Reformation times to a knoll within the field behind 
the cottage known as Kirkhill Cottage, immediately west 
from the Keir Hill of Dasher. 


MR. A. F. HUTCHISON, M.A., in a paper read at a 
meeting of the Stirling Natural History and 
Archaeological Society some years ago, furnished 
additional interesting records of the parish, from which we 
learn that the existence of a pre-Reformation Chapel at Kirk 
o' Muir is found in the Register of the Great Seal, where, 
under date 8th February, 1458-9, at Edinburgh, a deed is 
recorded in which King James II. granted the two merk 
lands of Ernbeg to a chaplain and his successors, to 
celebrate divine worship in the Chapel of St. Mary in 
Garwald, in the Moor of Dundaff. As some questions 
may depend on it, it will be as well to give the deed in 
the original Latin : — 

"Rex pro salute anime sue, &c., in purem elemosinam — 
concessit uni capellano et successoribus ejus divina celebraturis in 
capella Beate Marie in Garwalde in mora de Dundaff 2 Marcetus 
terrarrum de Ernbeg, in quibus situatur Crux de Kippane, in 
dominio de Menteith vie Perth — Faciend orationum Suffragia 


Does this charter constitute a deed or foundation, or 
is it only the record of a grant in aid of a pre-existing 
chapel ? Looking at the form of words — which resembles 
(in its uni capellano and its use of the future participle 
celebraturis) that usually employed in a deed of founda- 
tion, and considering the fact that in none of the 
published Montrose Charters is there any reference to the 
foundation, or even to the existence, of the Chapel of 
Dundaff, one might conclude that this was the origin of 
the chapel. On the other hand, the two merk lands of 
Ernbeg seemed a rather small endowment for the sole 
support of a chaplain ; and the probability appeared to be 
— more especially as there were kirk lands in existence at 
the time of the Reformation — that the King was merely 
co-operating with his friend, the Lord of Dundaff, in the 
establishment of the chapel. 

The question, however, is solved, and the matter put 
beyond doubt by information supplied by Mr. W. B. 
Cook, Stirling. Mr. Cook has had an opportunity of 
seeing an unprinted inventory of Montrose Writs, among 
which occurs a " Mortification by Patrick Graham of 
Dundaff of some lands in Dundaff for a chaplaincy there '* 
(an old torn parchment which seems to be the 
ecclesiastical authority for above foundation), dated in the 
year of God 1445. This conclusively settles the question 
of the founder and the date of the foundation as thirteen 
years previous to that of the royal grant, and also accounts 
for the kirk lands. If we inquire into the motives which 
led the King to make this grant to the little chapel in the 
moorlands of Dundaff, we are left to more or less probable 
conjecture. The phrases, " pro salute anime sue," and " in 
purem elemosinum," do not help. They are purely 
formal; and so it would not be safe to infer that His 
Majesty felt his soul in any special danger at that time, 
even although it was the fact that he had recently been 
guilty of the murder of Douglas in Stirling Castle. All 
the witnesses to the deed are royal officials, with the 
exception of two, one of these two being Patrick Lord le 
Graham, the actual founder of the chapel. Patrick 


Graham was a special friend and favourite of James II., 
who had just previously to this date done good service to 
the King and State in negotiating a two years' truce with 
England. In recognition of his services the King had 
erected certain lands in Stirlingshire belonging to 
Graham into the barony of Mugdock in his favour, by 
charter dated 24th October, 1458, and had raised him to 
the dignity of Lord le Graham. Very shortly afterwards 
he received a royal warrant, dated 27th March, 1459, 
empowering him to build cruives on the water of Allan, 
and apply the profits to his own use. The King therefore 
may be supposed to have contributed his quotum to the 
endowment of Dundaff Chapel out of friendship for its 
founder, and to add another mark of appreciation of his 
distinguished services. 


IN the general scramble for Church lands at the time of 
the Reformation, large portions were appropriated, not 
merely by the nobles, but also by the Crown. We find, 
however, James VI., by an Act in 1606, erecting abbacies 
.and priories in several places into temporal lordships, on 
behalf of distinguished men or favourites, who thus come 
to have a right to their lands similar to what the religious 
orders had prior to the Reformation. In this Act the 
Abbacies of Dryburgh and Cambuskenneth and the 
Priory of Inchmahome "were erected ane temporale 
lordschip callat ye Lordschip of Cardrois " in favour of the 
Earl of Mar. The Act runs thus : — 

" Johne, Earl of Mar, Lord Erskyne, and his predecessouris in 
their great cair and faithfulness in all things that micht tend to the 
advancement of his Majaisties honourable affairis, quhairof he 
and his father gaif evident and manifest pruif and experience 
in their worthie, memorable, and acceptable pains and 
travellis tane be them in the education of his Majaisties Maist 
Royal Persone frae his birth for education to the Prince, also his 
journeys and expeditions, which the said Earl has taen in 
embassies from his Highness, which he has discharged well, and his 
Highness being no wise in mind to forget the same nor leave the 


said services unrewarded. And finding no means better to reward 
for the same in some part than by disposition of such rents, profits, 
and emoluments of the lands, kirks, and others (particularly 
underwritten) as did pertain of before to the monasteries of 
Inchmahome and Cambuskenneth and Dryburgh. The same 
monasteries and superstitions thairof being now abolishit, and the 
kirklands of the same now anexit to his hienis crowne, and 
therewith considering that the said monasteries have been in all 
time heretofore commonly disposed by his Majestie's predecessouris 
to some that were come of the hous of Erskyne, all and haill the 
landis and baronie of Cardross, viz., the landis of Arnprior, the 
landis of East Garden, the landis of Kepe, the landis of East 
Poldare, the landis of Wester Poldare, the Myln of Arnprior, .... 
the Kirk landis of Kippen, the Kirk of Kippen — parsonage and 
vicarage with all prebendaries and chaplanreis in all time coming." 


IN the register of the Diocesan Synod of Dunblane, 
under date of 11th April, 1665, the following is found 
engrossed in the minutes : — 
"This day my Lord Cardross presented before the 
Bishop and Synod ane act of the Lords Commissioners for 
the plantation of kirks, the dait whereof is . the 8th of 
February, 1665, for removing of the Kirk of Kippen, out 
of the place it is now for the present, into a place more 
commodious for the benefit of the whole inhabitants, 
whereupon it was agreed be the Bishope and Synod that 
a certain number .... shall with the Bishope goe 
to Kippen for perambulating the bounds of the paroch 
thereof, and thereafter to decerne in the said matter, as 
the Bishope and brethren shall find to be most com- 
modious for the whole paroch." 

There is no doubt that the church spoken of here is 
that building already referred to as near the Keir Hill of 
Dasher, immediately behind Kirkhill Cottage, and that 
the Bishop is the able and devoted Robert Leighton. 

The register records the minute of visitation of the 
" Paroch Kirk of Kippen/' the purport of which is as 
follows : — " That the Kirk is ruinous, both walls and roof, 
and called for present reparacione, that the Bishope and 


his brethren perambulated the bounds of the paroch, and 
suggested a new Kirk further to the west." Objections 
were, however, made by the heritors, and the matter was 
referred for consideration and judgment to the Lords 


THERE was a chapel or meeting-house on the eastern 
boundary of the parish, near to the old mansion-house 

of Glentirran, which stood about 200 yards south- 
west of the old brig of Boquhan, near to the Keir Hill. 
This chapel was erected in 1687. After the indulgence 
granted by James VII., George Barclay was minister. In 
1679, Mr. Barclay was arrested and put into the guard- 
house of Edinburgh, but escaped by leaping from a 
window. He fled to the north of England, was named in 
the list of fugitives in 1684, fled afterwards to Holland, 
but returned with the Earl of Argyle in 1685, and 
preached at conventicles in Galloway and Ayrshire. He 
was settled in the meeting-house of Glentirran in 1688, 
and translated to Uphall in 1690. 

In 1748, a secession took place from the National 
Church at Stirling, led by Ebenezer Erskine, which 
spread over Scotland. The seceders designated them- 
selves the Associate Synod, then the Relief Church, and 
latterly the United Presbyterian, a body now merged, 
together with members of the Free Church, under the 
denomination of the United Free Church. 

Ten years after the Original Seceders left the National 
Church, branches hived off, calling themselves Burghers 
and Anti-Burghers, and a connection was formed at 
Buchlyvie in 1850. 



IN the graveyard close to the village, with entrance 
from the Cross, stand the ruins of the Old Church, 
with fine belfry. Built in 1691, and enlarged and 
repaired in 1777, up to which time it was a very plain 
building, in that year the heritors agreed to make the walls 
as smooth as possible, without injuring them, and after- 
wards to plaster them with two coats, to strike out one or 
more windows, and also put sounding holes in the roof. 
The practice of burying the dead within the Church had 
prevailed up to this time, and the heritors agreed to 
discontinue the practice. It has been asserted that there 
are more human remains within the four walls of the Old 
Church than in any other part of the burying-ground. 

There was a clock at one time in the Old Church 
tower, and in 1751, the heritors finding, to quote from the 
kirk session minutes, " the clock standing on Kippen 
Kirk to be not only useless there, but dangerous, appoint 
David Gourlay to see if he can get it disposed of." David 
Gourlay was clerk, and is named as of Kepdarroch. No 
purchasers coming forward, in a subsequent minute we 
find it was " resolved that the materials of the old clock of 
the Parish Kirk be disposed of by public roup in the 
street of Kippen, for ready money, or on short credit, as 
may be judged proper." It is further recorded that the 
same was exposed in different parcels, and the price, 
payable at St. Mavie's Day, amounted to two pounds 
eight shillings and one farthing sterling. 


The bell which at present hangs in the old, ivy-clad 
belfry was presented by Walter Leckie of Dashers, in 1726, 
and bears the following inscription : — 

"Donata. Fvit Hae Coampana ; A.D.A. Walters Leckie re 
Dashers, Savata, ad. 1726, Kippen recondita, 1618, and Aparochia, 
ie Michaele Potter, Pastore." 



It has been said that Mr. Leckie caused some of his 
silver plate to be put into the bell, and tradition has it 
that Mr. Leckie was a generous man, but lived rather a 
gay life. A worthy old gentleman belonging to the 
parish met him on one occasion in Edinburgh, where he 
had been residing for some time, and accosted him, 
saying, " Dasher ! Dasher ! a lang east the gate maks a 
short wast the gate," meaning that in proportion to the 
time which he spent in Edinburgh would his property at 
home be neglected. It was really so, for he died a poor 


In 1790 Robert Graham of Gartmore presented two 
very handsome and massive solid silver communion cups 
to the parish. They are still used on communion 
occasions, and bear the following inscription : — 

"Presented to the Parish of Kippen by Robert Graham of 
Gartmore in testimony of his veneration for the religion of his 
country, of his respect for the present pastor, and of his regard for 
the inhabitants of the parish. — Nov. 1st., 1790." 

The pastor, we may add, was the Rev. John 
Campbell. From the hall marks we learn that the cups 
were made in Edinburgh by Patrick Robertson, who was 
deacon of the Corporation in the year 1754 and again in 



THE present handsome church was built in 1827, the 
red sandstone being obtained from the moor above 
the village. There is seating accommodation for 
upwards of 800 in the church, and its imposing tower, over 
100 feet in height, is a prominent feature in the landscape 
for miles around. The bell in the tower weighs about 
10 cwts., and was presented by William Forrester of 
Arngibbon in 1873, and bears this inscription: — 

" I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go into the house 
of the Lord." 


The cross head over the bell is made of oak taken 
from the tower of the old College of Glasgow, which was 
razed to the ground in 1873, and this fact is recorded on 
a brass plate. 

In 1881, through the unsparing exertions of the 
Rev. William Wilson, then minister of the parish, a 
bazaar was held for the purpose of raising funds to place 
a clock in the tower, the clock being erected the same 
year, Mr. Wilson dying suddenly before the work was 
completed. The clock was erected by Messrs. R. & J. 
Dougall, watch and clock makers, Kippen, and has four 
dials, measuring over five feet each in diameter, while it 
strikes the hours on the large bell in the tower under- 
neath, conferring a boon on the villagers for a considerable 
distance around. 

The manse was originally erected in 1706, and has 
since been repeatedly enlarged and improved. 


AFTER the Disruption in 1843, a Free Church was 
built at Burnside, on a site granted by Thomas 
Graham of Kirkhill at a nominal rent for sixty years, 
afterwards extended to ninety-nine. It is now converted 
into a tenement of dwelling-houses bearing the name of 
Douglas Place, the property having been sold to Mr. J. 
Dougall, watchmaker, Kippen, when the congregation 
removed to the handsome new edifice in Main Street in 

The ceremony of laying the memorial stone of the 
new Free Church was performed by Mr. James Campbell, 
of Tullichewan, on Saturday, 10th November, 1878. 
Among those present were — Gilbert Beith, Esq., Balloch- 
neck; W. A. M'Lachlan, Esq., Auchentroig; T. L. Gal- 
braith, Esq., Stirling; J. F. Stewart, Esq., Benview, 
Kippen ; W. TJre, Esq., Crawfordstone ; R. Downie, Esq., 
Knock o' Ronald. The style of architecture is of the 
thirteenth century English Gothic, surmounted with a 
beautiful tower and slated spire rising a height of 90 feet. 


The cost of the building was about £2500, and the 
Rev. Patrick Thomas Muirhead, minister of the congre- 
gation, paid the greater part of this sum himself. Mr. 
Muirhead's memory is suitably perpetuated by a marble 
tablet on the walls within the church, and his remains are 
buried in the church ground immediately behind the 
church. Mrs. Wm. Anderson, widow of the first minister of 
the Free Church, and who seceded from the Parish 
Church of Kippen in 1843, presented a bell for the 
church tower. 


THE following are the names of the readers, rectors, 
and clergymen of this parish as far back as we can 
glean : — 

In 1473, Robert Colquhoun, a cadet of the family 
of Luss, was rector of Luss and Kippen. 

In 1574 (fourteen years after the Reformation), the 
parish was supplied by William Sterwilling, reader. 

1576 to 1578 — David Dikkesoun, reader. 

1578 to 1580— William Sterwilling, A.M. 

Andrew Murdo, A.M., from 1582 to 1587. Trans- 
lated to Greenock. 

Andrew Forrester, translated from Falkirk in 1595, 
presented to this parish by James VI. Died in 1603. 

William Nairne, A.M., presented by James VI. in 
1604. Translated to Dysart in 1617. 

Andrew Allan, A.M., translated from Blackford in 
1618. Died in 1619. 

Henry Levingstone, A.M., 1619. Died in 1673. 

Edward Blair, A.M., licensed by George, Bishop of 
Edinburgh, in 1665. Admitted to this parish in 1666. 
Died in 1673. 

Robert Young, A.M., presented by Henry Lord 
Cardross in 1673. In 1689 he was deprived by the Privy 
Council for not reading the proclamation of the Estates, 
and for not praying for their Majesties William and Mary. 



Archibald Riddell, A.M., third son of Sir Walter 
Riddell of that ilk, was ordained to this parish about 1670. 
He officiated as a Presbyterian minister at a communion 
in the fields at Eckford, near Haddington, in 1679, for 
which he was imprisoned, but liberated. In the end of 
1679 he was again apprehended, and committed prisoner 
to the Tolbooth of Jedburgh in September, 1680; ex- 
amined before a committee of the Privy Council shortly 
afterwards, and sent to the Bass, in the Firth of Forth, in 
June, 1681, for breaking his confinement at Kippen, 
keeping conventicles, and marrying and baptizing in a 
disorderly manner. He was afterwards, in 1685, trans- 
ported to America, where he had calls from congregations 
at New Bridge, Long Island, and Woodbridge, New 
Jersey. The latter he accepted, and he remained there 
till June, 1689, when he returned to England, but on the 
voyage was captured by a French man-of-war, taken to 
Nantz, Rochefort, and Toulon, where he was confined 
nineteen months in an old vessel at sea. Being landed, 
he was again sent to Rochefort, and thence to Dinan, 
where he continued about a year in the vault of an old 
castle, with hundreds of other prisoners ; and at length, 
with one of his sons, was exchanged for two popish priests 
sent by the Privy Council. He was at length presented 
to the Parish of Wemyss in 1691. 

John M'Claren, ordained to this parish in 1692. 
Translated to Carstairs in 1699. 

Michael Potter, A.M., the first minister since the 
Revolution, was ordained to this parish in 1700, and 
appointed Professor of Divinity in the University of 
Glasgow in 1740. 

Andrew Turnbull, ordained to this parish in 1741. 
Died in 1773. 

Peter Innes, presented by David Erskine, Esq., 
Writer to the Signet, in 1773. Died in 1775. 

James Thomson, presented by David Erskine, W.S., 
in July, 1775, but died 12th January, 1776, a few days 
before the time appointed for his ordination. 

David Davidson, presented to this parish by David 


Erskine, Esq., in 1776. Translated to Dundee in 1782. 
He became Moderator of the General Assembly, 

John Campbell, presented, at the desire of the 
parishioners, by David Erskine, Esq., in 1783 ; received a 
call to Dundee in 1804, which was not accepted. Trans- 
lated to the Tolbooth Church, Edinburgh, in 1806. He 
also was Moderator of the General Assembly. 

Patrick M'Farlane, presented by David Erskine, Esq.,. 
of Cardross, in 1800. Translated to Polmont in 1800 ; 
afterwards to St. John's, Glasgow; then to St. Enoch's, 
Glasgow ; and later to Greenock. He was also Moderator 
of the General Assembly. 

William Anderson, presented by David Erskine of 
Cardross in 1810. Mr. Anderson joined the Free Church 
in 1843, and died on the 27th March, 1845, minister of 
the Free Church, Kippen. 

Alexander Matheson, presented in 1844. Died in 

William Wilson, presented in 1866. Died in 1881. 

John Moodie, elected in 1882. Died in 1889. 

John Gavin Dickson, M.A., elected in 1890. 


William Anderson, joined at the Disruption in 1843. 
Died in 1845. 

Patrick T. Muirhead, elected in 1846. Died in 1888. 
Henry W. Hunter, M.A., elected in 1888. 


The following anecdote is told regarding a worthy 
old Seceder, who used to ride from Gargunnock to 
Buchlyvie to attend the Burgher Kirk there. One day, 
as he rode past the Parish Kirk of Kippen, the elder at 
the plate accosted him — " I'm sure, John, it's no' like the 
thing to see you ridin' in sic a doonpour o' rain sae far by 
to thae Seceders. Ye ken, the mercifu' man is mercifu' to 
his beast ; could ye no' step in by ? " " Weel," said John, 
" I wadna care sae muckle aboot stablin' my beast inside,, 
but it's anither thing mysel' gaun' in." 



Until 1850 the curfew bell was rung from the old 
belfry every morning at six, and in the evening at eight 
o'clock. The morning bell was, however, only discon- 
tinued at this time, the practice of ringing in the evening 
being continued until 1882. 

Several anecdotes are told respecting the Rev. Mr. 
Potter, minister of the parish in the earlier years of the 
eighteenth century, among which are the following: — 
It had been the practice with some of the parishioners for 
years to play football on Sunday afternoons. They 
usually met in a field at the foot of the brae leading to 
the village, betwixt the present farmhouse of Crawford- 
stone and the base of the hill. Mr. Potter disapproved of 
this, and he therefore one Sunday afternoon embraced the 
opportunity of going down when the people were engaged 
in the sport, and begged to be permitted to take part in 
the game. The players were somewhat astonished, but 
made no reply, neither complied nor refused. Mr. Potter 
said it was proper that all their employments should 
begin with prayer, and he thereupon pulled off his hat 
and began to pray. By the time he had concluded, the 
most of the players had skulked away, and the practice 
was in future discontinued. 

Mr. Potter, however, was the cause of a grievance 
which was bitterly felt by the villagers, he allowing his 
pigs to roam at will and feed in the graveyard. After 
many protests by the parishioners, to which he paid no 
heed, they resolved, partly in joke, partly in earnest, to 
play the following prank: — They seized one of the 
animals, which, by the way, was a black one, smeared it 
over with tar, tied it to the bell rope by the tail, and 
then set fire to it. The minister and the whole of the 
villagers were alarmed by hearing the bell ring in a 


furious manner, and the hue and cry was immediately 
raised that the devil himself was the bellman. It is 
needless to add that the pigs in future were penned up. 


THE Rev. William Wilson records a curious religious 
incident which occurred at Kippen on the 24th of 

June, 1871, which is as follows : — Mr. Dougall, post- 
master at Kippen, handed him the following telegram 
(written in Latin), and requested him to read it : " Rome, 
23; 7.26 p.m. — Cardinal Antonelli, Praesidi Conferentiae 
S. Vincentii, Kippen — ' Summus Pontifex istis civibus 
et conferentiae cui praesides gratiarum actiones et bene- 
dictionem apostolicam tribuit.' " 

The following is the translation : — " Rome, 23rd 
June — From Cardinal Antonelli to the President of the 
Conference of St. Vincent, Kippen — ' The Holy Father 
sends thanks and the apostolic benediction to your 
associates and the conference over which you preside.' " 

Mr. Dougall afterwards returned the telegram to Mr. 
Wilson with the following note written upon it : — " To 
Rev. Wm. Wilson — As the telegram must be disposed of 
in some way, I send it to you as the party most nearly 
corresponding to the designation. — R. D." 

Mr. Wilson suggested that the telegram seemed to 
have been sent to a Catholic fraternity who had intimated 
their meeting to the Pope and requested his blessing. 
There is some such society at Perth, but it is curious that 
it should have come to Kippen. 


THE proposal, which has long occupied the attention 
of the principal Glasgow merchants, to connect the 
eastern and western seas by means of a navigable 
canal, took shape in 1723. The passage proposed was by 
following the River Forth up to the ford of Cardross, and 
then crossing the bog of Ballat, into the water of Endrick, 
down to Loch Lomond, and from thence by the River 


Leven into the Clyde at Dumbarton. This survey took 
shape under Government auspices. It, however, fell in 
abeyance. The subject was revived in 1761 by the Trustees 
for the " Encouragement of Fisheries and Manufactures " 
in Scotland, who appointed the celebrated engineer, John 
Smeaton, to survey the ground, but this met the same 
fate as the previous one. 

For many years prior to this limestone had been 
brought down the Forth from a rock close to Gartmore by 
means of small boats. There was often, however, 
considerable risk and delay occasioned on account of 
gravel shoals. It became, therefore, a question, which 
was long entertained by the proprietors north and south 
of the Forth, whether they should not adopt the 
suggestion of Mr. Smeaton of putting a lock at Craigforth 
Mill, and another lock and a dam at the Fords of Frew, in 
order to make the river navigable at all seasons as far as 
Gartmore, for the bringing of coal and lime to the 
district and for the transmission of grain. This project 
also fell to the ground. 

The railway, which now runs through the valley, has 
not only met the wants which were long experienced in 
this neighbourhood, but has helped materially to increase 
the value of landed property in the parish. 

In more recent years another survey was made of the 
Forth passage, for the purpose of forming a ship canal, 
similar to that at Manchester, and thus enabling shipping 
to cross direct from the eastern to the western oceans. This 
project has also met the same fate as its predecessors. 

The intimation, early in 1903, that the Government 
had taken over St. Margaret's Bay, on the Firth of Forth, 
as a Naval Base for Scotland, renewed the question of a 
ship canal between the Forth and Clyde, it being con- 
tended that both in times of peace and war such a means of 
passing vessels from the east of Scotland to the west, and 
vice-versa, would be of material advantage to the nation. 
The question has been taken up with great enthusiasm, 
and the ultimate settlement may be left with the 
advocates of the rival schemes. 




THE Ford of Frew, at the extreme north-east end of the 
parish, being in past centuries the most accessible 
ford in the upper reaches of the Forth, was, in 
consequence, much frequented by contingents of military 
and others, and particularly those who wished to evade 
the garrison at Stirling in their journeyings north and 
south. On the 13th September, 1745, Prince Charles 
Edward Stuart, elder son and heir of the Chevalier de St. 
George, son and heir of James II. and VII., after having 
landed in the Highlands from France, proceeded with his 
army by way of Perth, Dunblane, and Doune, crossed the 
Forth at the Ford of Frew, and halted at the mansion 
house of Leckie, where he passed the night. JSText day he 
and his nobles passed by the south of Stirling Castle to 
Bannockburn House, by invitation of Sir Hugh Paterson. 
In December following some battering cannon from France, 
which had arrived at Montrose, were also brought across 
the ford, previous to the siege of Stirling Castle. On the 
1st of February, 1746, immediately after the second battle 
of Falkirk, we find Prince Charlie returning northwards by 
the same ford, owing to Governor Blakeney having broken 
down the bridge at Stirling. 

Mr. Macgregor Stirling has preserved the following 
anecdote connected with the retiring army: — When 
Charles Edward was understood to be about to recross the 
Forth in his retreat, a Captain Campbell, with a party of 
the King's soldiers, came the evening before to the farm 
of Wester Frew, and inquired particularly at Robert 
Forrester, one of the Earl of Moray's tenants, where the 
ford in the neighbourhood was. This respectable yeoman, 
being more attached to the family in exile than to that in 
possession, and suspecting that Campbell had no good 
intention towards what he esteemed a good cause, 
directed him to a ford very seldom used. Campbell took 
from a cart some sacks filled with caltrops, and threw 


these weapons of invisible annoyance into the river. 
Having done so, he and his party withdrew. Next day, 
Charles, with a considerable number of officers, arrived at 
Boquhan, where they halted and dined. The spot where 
the army halted, about fifty yards west from the present 
mansion house of Boquhan, is marked by a well built of 
hewn stone, and bears the inscription, "Prince's Well," 
1790. Forrester's sons and servants, anxious to see the 
noble adventurer, crossed the river, and remained in the 
close neighbourhood of the Prince and his staff during 
dinner. Having finished their meal, the warriors took the 
proper ford, except the Prince, who, not thinking any 
information necessary regarding fords he had used, rode 
through that in which Forrester had seen one of Campbell's 
men deposit some caltrops. One of those the Prince's 
horse picked up, and, of course, was wounded. 

It is related by the Rev. Dr. Patrick Murray, 
minister of Kilmadock Parish, that one of the young 
Forresters told him that he had been apprehensive lest he 
could find nobody to point out the Prince, and might not 
be able certainly to say he had seen one who, although he 
might never wear a crown, was, in the opinion of his 
father's family, entitled to that dignity. 

" But," said Forrester, waxen old when he told the 
stoiy, "there was no occasion for this anxiety, for there 
was a something in the brave Ascanius (his poetical 
name) which should have pointed him out to me, youno- 
as I was, as the son of a King among ten thousand." 



THE Parish of Kippen has furnished the scene of 
several episodes in connection with Rob Roy, 
among which the most outstanding are — The 
herriship or devastation of Kippen by Rob Roy, and the 
abduction of Jean Key by Robin Oig. 

Dr. Campbell, in his statistical account of the parish, 


speaks of a visit paid to Kippen by Rob Roy, which was 
known as " the Kippen herriship." Rob pretended to 
have a commission from King James to plunder the rebel 
Whigs, and might thus be said to be acting under General 
Cannon, who succeeded Dundee as James's commander- 
in-chief. Possibly it may be the same foray that is 
referred to when Ure of Shirgarton's goods, and those of 
his tenants, were carried off. Mr. Macgregor Stirling, 
minister of Port of Menteith, in his " History of Stirling- 
shire," referring to this incident, says : " The averments of 
the statist of Kippen that old Rob Roy was a ' robber by 
profession/ is not supported by the instance brought for- 
ward, that in 1691 he had headed ' the herriship of 
Kippen,' which amounts to nothing more than a military 
diversion by the Laird of Inversnaid in favour of his 
legitimate sovereign." Rob Roy had, it would appear, 
subsequent to his expulsion from his lands, been a con- 
tractor for aiding the police of the country, and in the 
habit of receiving what, in allusion to earlier times when 
contracts for this purpose had not received the counten- 
ance of law, was called " black maill." He asserted an 
alleged claim on this score, somewhat differently from his 
accustomed urbanity. Mr. Stirling of Garden, in 1710, 
had with his lady gone on a visit from Garden Castle, 
which stood on an eminence forming an island in what 
was once a lake, but is now a fertile meadow. On 
their return they found the fortalice occupied by a party 
under Robert Roy Macgregor, and the draw-bridge up. 
Robert, appearing at a window, thus accosted the ousted 
owner : — " You have hitherto withheld the reward of 
protection, Garden, but must render it now." Garden 
firmly refused, stating reasons more satisfactory to himself 
than to the other party, when the latter, bringing a child 
from the nursery, held it out of the window. The father, 
partly by the entreaties of the mother, was induced to 



The following anecdote is connected with what has 
been said of Rob Roy's personal prowess. He had been 
overnight in an alehouse at Arnprior, in company with 
Cunningham of Boquhan. They had quarrelled, and the 
latter having no sword, sent home for one, which, however, 
his family, suspecting a foolish broil, did not forward. He 
and Robert remained till break of day, when Boquhan, 
spying a rapier in a corner, insisted on fighting. Robert 
engaged, but instantly dropped his blade's point and 
yielded to one who he found was too expert a swordsman. 


The following is the story of the abduction of Jean 
Key of Edinbelly by Rob Oig, youngest son of Robert 
Roy Macgregor. About 1732 James Key, a native of 
Strathendrick, with a fortune of £2,000, married a lady of 
the name of Janet Mitchell. The issue of this marriage 
was one daughter, Jean, born in October of that year. In 
1742 Mr. Key purchased the property of Edinbelly, for 
which he paid £1,500, the balance going in stock and 
furniture. In 1744 Mr. Key suddenly died intestate, and 
his daughter, then in her twelfth year, became heiress of 
the property and effects. After this she was naturally an 
object of considerable interest in the valley, and as she 
advanced in years she had many suitors, among the num- 
ber being Mr. John Wright, son of the laird of Easter 
Glinns — a portion of which is now included in the estate 
of Wright Park — whom she married in 1749, being then 
in her nineteenth year. 

All now went well for a time, but by Mr. Wright's 
unexpected death, in October, 1750, about a year after 
marriage, she again became an object of interest. It 
would appear that Robert Oig got his eye on the young 
widow shortly after the death of her husband, and he 
thereafter called at the Black Bull Inn, Kippen, from 
whence he dispatched a messenger to Wright Park, 
"desiring leave to visit her." This being refused, the 


wrath of the Macgregor was roused, and he declared that 
if " fair wooing would not do, he should carry her off by 

Mrs. Wright, well knowing the determined character 
of the clan, advised her daughter-in-law to be on her 
guard, and for safety thought she had better remove to 
Glasgow. Jean, however, treated the matter lightly, only 
removing a few miles further west, to Edinbelly, the 
home of her mother. 

Rob, with his three brothers and five retainers, left 
Balquhidder in due course, determined on capturing the 
heiress, and in order to avoid the villages of Aberfoyle and 
Gartmore, they appear to have taken the old ride track 
down the west side of Loch Ard and Gartmore, reaching 
the well-known hostelry at Chapelarroch the same night. 
The evening being very dark, and a moorland country to 
be crossed, one of the brothers rode back to Gartmore, and 
got two local smugglers to act as guides. Shortly after 
leaving Chapelarroch, Rob received the tidings that Jean 
had removed to Edinbelly. Arriving at that place, they 
at once seized the object of their search, and placing her 
on the saddle behind her future husband, rode off in 
triumph. The horse of one of the Gartmore smugglers, 
however, got bogged, and this caused some delay. That 
night, at the then little inn of Rowardennan, a sham 
marriage took place, and next morning they crossed Loch 
Lomond, for the house of Mr. Campbell of Glenfalloch, and 
ultimately landed at Inverorick. 

Meantime, to prevent Macgregor taking possession 
of the estate, Jean's friends had the property sequestrated, 
and warrants issued for the capture of the offenders. 
Some time after, James, Rob Oig's brother, accompanied 
by Jean, left Lochend House, on the shore of the Lake of 
Menteith, and rode off to Edinburgh, with the view of 
presenting a bill of suspension regarding the sequestration 
of her property. This, however, was bearding the lion in 
his den, the lady being cared for by the authorities, while 
James was allowed to return home. Jean Key emitted 
her declaration on the 20th of May following, and the 


Macgregors and their accomplices were summoned to 
stand their trial at the Justiciary Court at Perth, to be 
held on the 25th of May, but, disregarding with contempt 
all such forms of law, they were all, nine in number, 
declared outlaws. 

By order of the Court of Session, Mrs. Wright was 
placed under the care of one John Wightman, of 
Maulsley, in the Potter Row, near Edinburgh, who was, 
along with the magistrates, responsible for her safe keep- 
ing. By order of the Court she was set at liberty on the 
4th of June, and returned to some friends in Glasgow on 
the 7th of the same month, where she remained till 
her death by smallpox on the 4th of October, 1751. 

Rob Oig was apprehended by a party of military 
from the fort of Inversnaid, at the foot of Gartmore, and 
was conveyed to Edinburgh on the 26th of May, 1753. 
After a delay of some months in prison, he was brought to 
the bar of the High Court of Justiciary and indicted by 
the name of Robert Macgregor, alias Campbell, alias 
Robert Oig, and found guilty of being art and part in the 
forcible abduction of Jean Key from her own dwelling. 
He was therefore condemned to death, and was executed 
at Edinburgh on 14th February, 1754. 

The family of Key, of Wright Park and Edinbelly, 
are buried near to the ivy-clad ruins of the Old Parish 
Church of Kippen, and the spot is marked by a tomb- 
stone bearing the following inscription : — 

In Memory of 

William Key 

(the last of the name), 

of Edinbelly and Wright Park, 

who died March, 1848, 

aged 72 years, 


Jane Laing, his wife, 

who died September, 1851. 




IT may be interesting to record here several old 
traditions in connection with Boquhan estate. 
Boquhan, it would appear, had been anciently an 
appanage of Dundaff, and in possession of the Grahams. 
The late learned Lieut.-General Fletcher Campbell, of 
Saltoun and Boquhan, in a curious MS. left by him, alludes 
to a battle in the neighbourhood between Graham of 
Boquhan and Leckie of Leckie, regarding which we know 
nothing beyond what is contained in the following refer- 
ence — " The ballad," he says, u that celebrates the battle 
of Ballochleam was still sung by a lady of our days. The 
Leckies must have been of considerable number at that 
time if they could cope with the Grahams." The general 
further tells us that, " in the hollow of one of these fields, 
searching for limestone, an old tenant found some pieces 
of brass armour, together with the points of spears, and a 
great quantity of different bones. He said that he had 
intended to go on, but a thought came that he might 
raise up the plague." 


In a MS., of date 1793, by General Campbell, we 
find a passage which, though not vouched, is entitled to 
credit from the character of the author. Speaking of Sir 
John De Grahame's castle, he says, " From these heights 
the Barons of Boquhan had descended to the dryfields, 
the ruins of their ancient tower were but lately dug up in 
the field of Old Hall ; and some aged men can remember 
the old iron door and grated windows. A modern house 
in the carse with open fields, near the high road, receives 
the present proprietor," meaning himself. Nimmo says — 
" There is some reason to think that Boquhan belonged to 
the Earls of Menteith, of the name of Graham. Sir Colin 
Campbell of Boquhan's mother, second wife of his father, 


was Lady Margaret Graham, daughter of the Earl of 
Menteith. The Earls of Menteith were anciently patrons 
of Kippen, a presumption of land property in the neigh- 
bourhood, more especially in olden times. Succeeding the 
Grahams, Boquhan came into the possession of Sir Colin 
Campbell, younger son of Archibald, 4th Earl of Argyle, 
and, after the death of his elder brother without issue, 
6th Earl. He was father of Archibald, 7th Earl of Argyle, 
and of James, created Earl of Irvine. In modern times it 
was in the hands of the Cunninghames ; it was latterly 
left by Miss Mary Cunninghame to the late well-known 
Lord Milton's second son, Henry Fletcher, who, in virtue 
of a clause in the settlement, took the surname of Camp- 
bell, and, dying without issue, was succeeded by his 
younger brother, John, the accomplished and patriotic 
Lieut.-General, who, as he was the only surviving brother, 
possessed, under the double name of Fletcher-Campbell, 
the two estates of Saltoun and Boquhan. They were then 
divided between his two sons, Andrew Fletcher, Esq., of 
Saltoun, and Henry Fletcher Campbell, Esq., of Boquhan." 
In 1900, Admiral Henry John Fletcher Campbell, 
R.N., C.B., of Boquhan, who succeeded his father, Henry 
Fletcher Campbell, sold the estate to Stephen Mitchell, 
Esq., tobacco manufacturer, Glasgow, who is considerably 
enhancing the value of the estate by varied improve- 
ments. Besides erecting several estate workmen's houses, 
on the most approved sanitary principles, a handsome 
porter lodge of Swiss design, admitted to be the finest 
lodge in the county, has been erected at the approach to 
the mansion house near Kippen Station. 



ON the muir of Newmill, close to the highway 
leading to Fintiy, is a small lake called Loch 
Leggan, about a mile in circumference, and for 
the most part surrounded with a wood composed of fir 
trees. There are no visible feeders to the loch — that is 
to say, there are no burns running into it — yet it is 
always plentifully supplied with water. A considerable 
stream issues from it, and this favours the conclusion that 
the loch is fed from numerous springs. The water wheel 
of a meal mill, some two or three hundred yards down, is 
driven by this stream, and the fact of the miller at Broich 
having always plenty of water favours this theory. The 
stream, increasing as it flows, forms the burn of Broich, 
whose waters, after passing through a beautiful glen close 
by the old house of Broich, and the present mansion 
house of Arngomery, meanders, serpent-like, through the 
lands of Fairfield, and thus earns the name of the " Crooks 
of Broich," ere it discharges itself into the Forth. At one 
time a portion of this burn was employed in floating moss 
from the plain below. 


The Rev. Mr. Wilson has preserved several interest- 
ing traditions connected with this loch. One is that a 
house stood in the centre, that in the hollow there was a 
spring, with a huge stone upon it, that the stone by some 
mistake was removed, and the house flooded in conse- 
quence. In the old statistical account of the parish, Dr. 
Campbell, speaking of the loch, says that " in the middle 
there is a cairn, or heap of stones, supposed to be the 
ruins of an old house, of which, however, no authentic 
account can now be obtained." 

The fact, however, that the remains of a causeway, 
about 7 feet wide, extends from the north, and runs 


in a south-westerly direction until it is lost in the loch, 
and lost in the soil, favours this tradition. Similar cairns 
have been found in most of the lochs of Scotland, and 
in some instances, too, causeways, and within the last 
few years antiquaries have made additional discoveries 
regarding them, e.g., in Queen Margaret's Loch, near 
Forfar; in Carlingwark Loch, in Galloway; in Kinellan 
Loch, in Ross-shire ; in the loch of Dowalton, in Wigtown- 
shire (which was drained in the summer of 1863 by 
the late Sir W. Maxwell of Monreith), and in the Loch of 
Leys, where from time immemorial the building has been 
known as the Castle of Leys. 

The cairn in the centre of Loch Leggan, with the 
causeway on the shore, are generally supposed to be the 
remains of a crannog — an island dwelling erected on 
wooden piles jointed together — where some of the chiefs 
or nobles belonging to the parish permanently resided ; 
in any case, where they retreated in times of danger. 
There have also been found dwellings similarly constructed 
in other countries as well as Scotland. In Ireland they 
are very numerous. The Irish crannogs were erected 
chiefly in bogs or deep morasses, and were called insula 
fortificata. The Swiss were in the habit of building large 
villages along the shores of the lakes, on platforms, sup- 
ported on piles, such as have been found in our Scotch 
lochs, w r hich they reached by means of gangways. Similar 
dwellings, too, have been found in Denmark and Hanover, 
in Savoy and Upper Italy. 


Tradition has it that a battle was fought to the north- 
east of Loch Leggan, about the year 1534, at the place 
which is still known by the name of the Bloody Mires. 
The battle arose on account of a dispute betwixt the 
inhabitants of the baronies of Dasher and Arnprior regard- 
ing the course of the stream which issues from the loch. 
Many lost their lives on the occasion. The matter having 
been brought under the notice of King James V., who was 
then residing at Stirling, he gave instructions for the 


stream to be diverted into a channel different from the 
wishes of the inhabitants, which course it still holds. Two 
swords and a stirrup and spur were found eighteen inches 
below the surface by Mr. James Buchan, Arnprior, in 
1858, while making a road over a marshy place near the 
wood known as The Firs, above Arnmore, close to what is 
called Bloody Mires, and these relics may go towards 
proving the tradition that a battle was fought here, and, 
further, that there were dragoons engaged on the occasion 
of the encounter. 


THERE are no less than five places in the parish 
which from time immemorial have been known as 
" Keirs," or forts, viz. : — 
Keir Hill of Glentirran, above the present 
mansion house of Boquhan, a portion of which 
has been used by the family of Fletcher-Camp- 
bell as a burying place. 
Keir Hill of Dasher, situated on the west bank 
of Cuthbertson Glen, on the property of Kirkhill, 
presently covered with oak trees. 
Keir Brae of Drum, looking eastward on the north 
side of the burn which separates the farm of 
Drum from Gateside. 
Keir Knowe of Arnmore, west from the present 

farm steading of Laraben, scarcely traceable. 
Keir Brae of Garden, on the western boundary 

of the property of Garden. 
The two most perfect Keirs are those of Dasher and 
Drum. There is also at Garden, to the east of the present 
mansion house, the remains of what has been known for 
generations as the Peel of Garden, situated upon a 
peninsula on the north-west side of what was a morass or 
loch. This morass was drained many years ago, and is 
now called the Meadow. Around this peel there was a 
rampart, or outer fortification, called a barm-kyn or a 


berm-kyn, and a ditch, pretty entire until the middle of 
the nineteenth century. 

These peel towers were usually three storeys high. 
In times of danger the cattle were placed in the lower 
storey, while the second and third storeys were chiefly 
occupied by the women and children of the family. The 
battlement, or bartizan, was used as a place of outlook, 
while near the roof hung a large iron cone, sunk in an iron 
grating, which was always filled with wood, called the bale 
or needfire, ready to be lit at a moment's notice. In the 
"Lay of the Last Minstrel," Sir Walter Scott thus refers 
to this rude mode of telegraphing — 

" The ready page, with hurried hand, 

Awakened the need fire's slumbering brand, 
And ruddy blushed the heaven ; 
For a sheet of flame from the turret high, 
Waved like a blood flag on the sky, 

All flaring and uneven, 
And soon a score of fires, I ween, 
From height, and hill, and cliff were seen ; 
Each with warlike tidings fraught, 
Each from each the signal caught." 


Now the question is — Who built those Keirs ? They 
have been variously called British, Pictish, and Norwegian. 
The author of the old " Statistical Account " seems to 
favour the idea that they were erected by the Romans. 
They are certainly not Roman remains, for the Romans 
erected their fortifications on the plains for temporary 
protection, and they had always a figure, with four right 
angles or a square, and sometimes an oblong, while the 
Keirs were all oval, if not circular. Again, they are cer- 
tainly not Norwegian, as they came from a country 
where wood was used only in the construction of edifices 
and it is most unlikely that, being unskilled in the use of 
stone, the Norwegians would take to it for building pur- 
poses in the land of their adoption. Besides, no such 
edifices were ever known to exist in Norway. We are, 
therefore, forced to the conclusion that these Keirs were 


Pictish remains. Like other places of fortification, they 
were doubtless often destroyed and often rebuilt. This 
may have continued during the period known as the 
Viking period in Scotland, and also during the struggles 
of the feudal ages. Tradition says that the Picts had a 
city at the confluence of the Goodie with the Forth, in the 
fifth or sixth centuries, supposed to have been built of clay. 
It would be in vain, therefore, to dig for any remains of 
the Picts there. 


This leads us to enquire, what were those Keirs ? 
Their very existence implies life, energy, skill ; that they 
were the resort of human beings like ourselves, who 
experienced hopes and fears, joys and sorrows. We can- 
not doubt that within them, around them, there were 
deeds of daring, oftentimes dauntlessly displayed. But 
what were they? Were they mere forts or dwelling- 
places, or places for signalling ? It is suggested that it is 
not unlikely they were used for all these purposes together 
during times of war and danger, and are what antiquaries 
call Brochs, the typical form of which is a hollow, circular 
tower of dry-built masonry, 50 feet in height and 60 feet 
in diameter, with walls 15 feet thick, containing oblong 
chambers with vaulted roofs. 


In the year 1874 Mr. Graham of Coldoch, on the 
other side of the valley, had a mound on his estate similar 
in construction to above description explored, and which 
was pronounced to be the remains of a Broch, perfect in 
all its parts. This erection is still preserved in good con- 
dition, and believed to be a Broch, notwithstanding the 
statement of many antiquaries that there were no Brochs 
south of the Forth. 

In 1832, Mr. Zuill, farmer at Drum, requiring stones 
for building purposes, partly opened the Keir Brae of 
Drum. According to the account of John Logan, Cauld- 
hame, who was employed to give assistance, they dis- 


covered a circular building built like a drystone dyke, 
with flat, rude stones without mortar. They were arrested 
in their work, however, by the appearance of flags, con- 
veying the idea that it had been a place of sepulture, but 
no bones were found, only a dark, earthy substance, like 
bodies crumbled to dust. This, however, by no means 
detracts from the theory advanced that these remains are 
Brochs, and had been dwelling places in ages past, as it 
may have been customary to bury the dead within Brochs, 
just as it was the practice to bury the dead under the 
floor of the old church of Kippen, the tower of which still 
stands in the graveyard. 


PEAT MOSS is to be found everywhere in the north 
of Europe ; indeed, many millions of acres are 
covered with it, yet its study has been very much 
neglected or overlooked by naturalists and scientific men, 
who appear to regard it as either unworthy of their notice 
or at least unworthy of the appliances of scientific research. 
In its original state the moss in the valley is from 
ten to thirteen feet deep, one half — the upper — is 
known as the white or flow moss, the under being black 
moss, which not only makes the best peats, but it was 
from this that the peat houses were made by those 
who were engaged about the beginning of the nineteenth 
century in clearing the moss from what is now converted 
into some of the finest arable farms in the valley of the 
Forth. A portion of the Burn of Broich was diverted 
through the lands of Strewiebank, and thence to Kippen 
Moss, where it was employed in flooding the moss through 
channels to the Forth. For a similar purpose a steam 
pump was erected on the banks of the Forth by the pro- 
prietors of Blackhouse, and the ruins of the brick building 
used at this time are still to be seen. This pump forced 
the water up into lochs, or dams, constructed on top of 
the moss, and reclaimed a considerable portion of the 
land on the farms of Blackhouse and Littiekerse. 



The operations resulted in excellent meadow and 
arable lands being reclaimed, while at same time they 
yielded several interesting Roman relics, which are now 
preserved in the Antiquarian Museum of Edinburgh. 
Beneath the moss, juniper, hazel, birch, rowan, and 
various large trees — oak and pine especially — have been 
found. Trunks, 60 feet in length, and from 4 to 6 feet in 
diameter, have been found, indicating the existence of a 
forest, and the fact that the trees have their roots in the 
earth is evidence that they grew there. Many of the trees 
seem broken off near the surface of clay, and have charred 
wood in large quantities all round their roots, indicating 
that they were destroyed by fire, while others bear the 
marks of having been felled with the hatchet. 


The reclaiming of this waste land was discontiaued 
about 1853, owing to the fishery proprietors on the lower 
reaches of the Forth objecting to the large pieces of moss 
being floated down the river completely destroying 
their fishing nets ; while the cost of clearing was also 
heavy, as it takes not less than £30 to clear each acre, 
while the rent of an acre, when cleared and cultivated, is, 
over all, about 30s. The practice of cutting peats for fuel 
is also dying out, owing to the expense and labour involved. 

Scientific research, however, has pointed to the possi- 
bility of a new era dawning in utilising this peat moss — 
which covers ground of most excellent quality — in the 
manufacture of carpets, articles of clothing, etc. Fabrics 
woven from it are found to have the toughness of 
linen with the warmth of wool. Paper of several qualities 
has been already manufactured from moss, and the many 
uses to which peat fibres have been applied indicates 
possibilities that may render the large stretches of moss in 
the Kippen district a valuable addition to its resources in 
the future. 



IN a district so diversified with hill and dale, aspect* 
and soils, it is no wonder that a great variety of plants 
should be found. Hills, dryfield, clays, sands, moors, 
mosses, and woodlands cannot but furnish an ample flora. 
Various tints of green are spread over the hills and dales, 
hedgerows, and gardens ; while the varied walks by moor, 
woodland, river banks, or by the dusty roadsides, are 
literally studded with flowers. Of all the propensities of 
plants, however, none seem more strange than their 
different periods of blooming. Some produce their flowers 
in the winter, or very first dawnings of spring, many when 
the spring is established, some at midsummer, and some 
not till autumn. To enumerate all the plants that have 
been discovered within the confines of the parish would be 
a needless task ; but a short list of the commoner varieties 
found may be neither unacceptable nor unentertaining. 

In walking along our highways we find several varieties 
of the dog rose, which takes precedence among the wild 
flowers, in like manner as her more tender sister ranks as 
queen of the garden, the varieties being Rosa Arvensis, 
Rosa Lucida, glossy rose ; Rosa Spinosissima, and Rosa 
Rubiginosa, sweet briar. Perhaps as pretty as any wild 
rose, in flower, fruit, and delightful fragrance, must 
next be placed the " lone hairbell," Campanula 
Carpatica and Campanula Rotundifolia, while a host of 
others, including masses of "speedwell," Veronica Gen- 
tianoides and Veronica Longifolia ; pretty silver weeds, 
Potentilla Alpestris and P. Anserina ; white musk 
mallow, M alva Moschata ; cushion pink, Silene Acaulis ; 
rest harrow, Ononis Arvensis; and the fragrant honey- 
suckle, Lonicera Perielymenum, are to be found in rich 

In pastures and fields we find the common celandine 
(Chelidonum majus), the shining crane's bill (Genarium 
lucidum), the bladder campion {Silene inflata), white and 
red dead nettle (Laminium album and L. purpureum) u 


pink persicaria (Polygonum persicaria), and scarlet 
pimpernel (Anagalles arvensis). 

In the woods and thickets are found the sweet 
woodruff (asperula odorata) and pretty little tuberous 
moschatell (Adoxa moschatellina), the lily of the valley 
(Convallaria majalis), foxglove (Digitalis purpurea), 
deadly night shade (Atropa belladonna), the cuckoo pint 
(Arum maculatum), and the giant bell-flower (Campanula 

Then, in the moors and high-lying lands, we find the 
cow or red whortle berry (Vacciniurn vitas idaea), its 
berries of a rich crimson, and generally ripe about the 
middle of August, this berry being recognised as the 
badge of the Clan M'Leod ; butterwort (Pinguieula 
vulgaris), milkwort (Polygala vulgaris), common ling 
(Erica vulgaris), wild mignonette (Reseda luteola), and 
red mint (Mentha rubra). 

Along the river-sides, and in marshy places, we find 
several species of the Ranunculus (Nymphcea alba) or 
the white water lily, while the water lobelia (Lobelia 
dortmanna) is found in pools or miniature lakes. The 
water hemlock or cowbane (Cicuta virosa) is to be found 
occasionally on the banks of the Forth, but, being of a 
poisonous nature, is happily scarce. 

The trees planted or indigenous to the district are 
oak, beech, Scotch fir, ash, birch, spruce, silver fir, larch, 
and hazel. In addition to the plantations that surround 
the houses of proprietors, every glen and ravine is covered 
with copsewood. There are some magnificent oaks and 
beeches on the estates of Boquhan and Garden, while 562 
acres of woodland are under cultivation in the parish. 

Throughout the parish are to be found almost the 
whole family of ferns, mosses, lichens, and gnaphaliums. 
The bracken is to be found everywhere ; while a host of 
graceful ferns, in numerous variety, are to be found in the 
partial shade of open woods, grassy glades, paths, drives, 
and old walls. Among a few of the varieties are found 
the black-stemmed spleenwort in its pretty crested 
and notched form, the little wall rue or rue fern, the 


forked and other native spleenworts, beech fern (Poly- 
podium phegopteris), oak fern (Polypodium dryopteris), 
mountain buckler (Lastrea montana) } \&&y fern (Athyrium 
filix fazmina), male fern (Lastrea felix-mas), mountain 
parsley (Allosorus crispus), prickly shield (Polystichum 
aculeatum), common polypody (Polypodium vulgare). 
Common hart's tongue (Scolopendrium vulgare) is to be 
found in many places, notably on the sides of the wall of 
the " Auld Brig of Boquhan," and on the face of the rock 
at " Lecky's Loup," Cuthbertson Glen, and various other 
spots. The haunts of the fern, surrounded by the beauties 
and harmonies of natural colour, present a peculiarly 
fascinating attraction, where the student of nature can 
participate in many lessons without fees. 

The following verses express what a student of nature 
felt on visiting the woodlands and glens in the parish : — 

The wild flowers of Kippen, how sweetly they bloom 

By woodland and moorland so wild ; 
Her highways and byways they light up and illume — 

Pure children of earth undefiled. 

They deck the green braes, where the lambs are at play, 

And they glisten on pasture land old ; 
They festoon old ruins with green, waving spray, 

And bright tints of crimson and gold. 

When the breath of the spring floats warm o'er the land, 

And the voice of the mavis is sweet, 
Then the wild flowers come forth, an innocent band, 

To brighten each lovely retreat ; 

When the sunglints are bright on the banks of the stream, 

Where the angler is plying his art, 
While the dewdrops around like silver beads gleam, 

There ye spring up to gladden our heart. 

The buttercup rich spreads her breast to the sun, 

While the violet hides in the shade ; 
The sorrel, white-robed, and the cuckoo pint, dun, 

Besprinkle the meadow and glade. 

Would you find them ? Then go to the woodland, the field, 

To the green home of bird and of bee ; 
And vigour and health is the boon that they yield, 

And a converse with Nature all free. 



FOR its size, the parish of Kippen presents a con- 
siderable variety of geological structure. Speaking 
generally, it consists of a series of low hills, bounded 
on the north by the flat plain of the Carse of Stirling, and 
on the south by the Endrick Valley and the hollow which 
lies at the northern base of Stronend and the Gargunnock 
Hills. These low hills are formed of abraded sandstone of 
various formations. The greater portion consists of Old 
Red Sandstone, part of the great belt of that formation 
which stretches across Scotland, from Stonehaven on the 
north-east to Rothesay on the south-west. The south- 
eastern boundary of the formation goes right through 
the parish of Kippen, passing behind the village a 
few yards south of the main street. No trace of this 
great fault, representing the junction of two important 
geological formations, appears at the surface. The Old Red 
Sandstone rocks in Kippen parish consist of dull red and 
grey sandstones, which are exposed at various points in the 
courses of small streams. These are succeeded on the 
south-east, on the other side of the line of junction, by a 
band of bright red stone belonging to the Calciferous 
Sandstone series, the lowest members of the great 
Carboniferous formation. The brilliant colour of this 
stone is most noticeable, and the rock is quarried at 
different parts of the parish, most of the houses in the 
locality being built of it. Its red colour has caused 
it to be associated with the Old Red Sandstone, which it 
immediately adjoins, and Hugh Miller and other geologists 
have reckoned it as the highest member of the last- 
mentioned formation, but it is generally considered now 
as the lowest member of the Carboniferous formation. 
Towards the base of the Gargunnock Hills, the shales 
and grey sandstones of the Cement-stone group of the 
Calciferous Sandstone appear. The most noticeable 
feature in the landscape of the parish is the steep slope of 
Stronend and the adjoining hills. Although these are 


beyond the boundary of the parish, no account of its 
geology would be complete without some mention of them. 
These hills form the northern edge of the extensive 
plateau which at its various parts is known as the 
Campsie Fells, Kilsyth Hills, Touch Hills, GargunnoCk 
and Fintry Hills. The plateau consists of a series of 
sheets of porphyrite, a volcanic rock of Carboniferous 
age. Associated with the porphyrite are bands of tuff 
agglomerate, which prove that this was a region of great 
volcanic activity in ancient times. The porphyrite, which 
is an ancient lava, appears in a series of flows one upon 
the other, and this is the cause of those parallel horizontal 
lines which are such a striking feature of the ridge. Each 
lava flow ends in a vertical face, at the base of which a 
talus of weathered rock has accumulated, assuming a steep 
slope. Each successive lava flow is marked by a vertical 
cliff with its sloping talus, and thus has arisen the peculiar 
appearance of successive cliff and slope on the northern 
face of the hill. 

In the parish of Kippen there is abundant evidence of 
glaciation. The whole of the central portion of the parish 
presents that abraded appearance resulting from the pro- 
longed action of the ice sheet in glacial times. The 
surface is worn into hummocks and ridges, and on this, 
glacial striae or scratches can be distinctly seen at places. 
The direction of the ridges and of the striae is identical, 
and by the compass reads 75 degrees W.N.W. by E.S.E. 
On Gribloch Moor the rock crops out repeatedly at the 
surface, among peat and heather. It has an exceedingly 
rough appearance, and is so covered with grey lichens 
that it is only on examination that we see that the rock 
is a sandstone of brilliant red colour. The sandstone is so 
soft as not to have retained very clearly the finer markings 
of the ice, as a harder rock would have done ; but its 
ridged appearance and the general contour of the district 
give clear evidence of extreme glaciation. The whole 
water-shed between the Forth and the Endrick is a 
succession of low, rounded hills, with peat moss, and 
occasionally a small loch in the hollows — a characteristic 


ice-worn region. All the lower ground is covered with 
sheets of boulder clay, the material resulting from the 
wearing action of the ice. The long valley south of Wright 
Park is a true glacial valley, the result of the greater 
impact there of the ice, owing to the resistance of the 
hard porphyritic rock of Stronend. Travelled boulders, 
consisting chiefly of fragments of Highland rocks from the 
north-west, may be seen here and there in the parish, but 
these are not very plentiful compared with other neigh- 
bouring districts. 

One of the principal natural features of the parish is 
the flat portion of the Carse of Stirling, which is a " raised 
beach," or old ocean floor, relic of a time when the salt waters 
of the Forth estuary rolled westward as far as Gartmore. 
Had there been no change since then in the relative levels 
of land and sea, Kippen would now have been a seaside 
village, on the southern margin of the Firth of Forth. 
The old coast line can be distinctly traced throughout its 
whole length in the parish of Kippen, following a winding 
course. Near Port of Menteith Station a long promontory 
stretches out to the north, between which and Cardross 
the ancient estuary must have been reduced to a narrow 
strait. Between the station and Arnprior village was a 
well-marked bay, from which the coast line passes east- 
ward underneath where the village of Kippen now stands. 
The old coast line can still be seen at any point on the 
southern margin of the carse, where the land rises with a 
steep slope, at some places even with a precipitous cliff, 
which looks as if the waters of the ancient ocean had just 
receded. It can also be very well studied at many points 
in the immediate vicinity of Kippen. All over the carse 
are beds of marine shells, chiefly oysters, at a depth of 
several feet below the surface. There are at least fourteen 
well-authenticated cases of the remains of whales being 
found imbedded in the carse clays, none of them, however, 
in the parish of Kippen. Along with several of the whale 
remains were human implements, proving that man was 
contemporary with the old Forth estuary now marked by 
the fifty feet raised beach. There are evidences of a still 


older coast line, forming the boundary of the 100 feet 
raised beach, an older and higher ocean floor, which in 
the parish of Kippen cannot be so clearly traced. 

The most recent geological formation in the parish is 
the peat moss overlying the clays of the carse, and known 
as Flanders Moss. This has been entirely formed since 
the human race inhabited this country. The moss would 
begin to form whenever the sea retired, leaving a flat and 
stagnant swamp, very imperfectly drained by the river 
Forth, which had not had time to carve its winding course 
out of the carse clays. The moss must have continued 
to grow down to historical times, though reclamation 
-and drainage have now stopped its growth. 




UNTIL about the close of the eighteenth century 
smuggling was unknown, or, as we might say, 
was unnecessary in the locality. Kippen parish, 
being peculiarly intersected by portions of Perthshire, was 
placed by an old Act on the North, or Highland, side of 
the line, and had certain privileges for the somewhat free 
manufacture of whisky. By a subsequent Act, however,, 
dated 1793, placing the parish on the South side of the 
line, these privileges were withdrawn, and, as a conse- 
quence, an extensive trade in the illicit distilling of 
whisky was carried on, which was not considered a crime 
so long as those engaged in it kept clear of the officers of 
the law. Men of all shades of character were connected 
with this hazardous occupation, from the lawless ruffian, 
who would not scruple to commit murder if need be, to 
the simple-minded cottar, who was incapable of doing any 

It is related that many novel and ingenious methods 
were resorted to by those engaged in the "trade" in 
getting the product of the " sma' still " conveyed to 
Glasgow and neighbouring towns without raising sus- 
picion. At that time a good trade was done by the 
inhabitants of the parish in supplying those of the City 
of Glasgow with cartloads of peats, driving them by way 
of Fintry, Crow Road, and Campsie; and this business 
afforded one of the mediums of getting the "genuine 
article " conveyed unobserved. The " sma' keg " was 
usually placed in the middle of the cart, while the peats 
were built firmly in the form of a wall around it. Thus 
equipped, the innocent-looking cottar, driving his horse 
laden with the fruits of his industry, wended his way to 
the town unmolested by the Excise officials. 


Several daring and exciting incidents, however, took 
place between the smugglers and the Excise officers at 
various times about the beginning of the nineteenth 
century. Excise officials differed materially in their views 
as to the discharge of their duties : while some were stern 
and rigorous, and never missed an opportunity of bringing 
the offenders to justice, others were of opinion that they 
only deserved to be caught when they did not keep 
proper hours. The former class were certain, sooner or 
later, to meet the reward of their temerity at the hands 
of the smugglers, by being waylaid and thrashed, and in 
some instances murdered; whereas the latter class fared 
sumptuously at their hands, in houses kept " het an' 
reekin'," which simply meant fully stored with meat and 


In those days a Mr. Hosie was Excise officer in 
Buchlyvie, and had charge of the ride district. He was 
somewhat short built, but was of a proud disposition, 
and waged war against the smugglers with considerable 
rigour. Having got information against a notorious 
smuggler, and not daring to run the risk of apprehending 
him, he cited him to attend a Sheriff Court to be held in 
Drymen, with a view to his capture. Hosie called in the 
assistance of the men from the Government cutter 
stationed on Loch Lomond. The sheriff duly arrived, 
accompanied by a number of county gentlemen, among 
them being the late Captain M'Lachlan, of Auchentroig. 
The smuggler attended, not expecting anything serious ; 
but when about to enter the court-room he observed a 
number of bluejackets through a slit in the door. 
Turning the key cautiously in the lock, and slipping it 
into his pocket, he walked into the court-room. Mr. 
Hosie was sitting near the window, and on the smuggler's 
entry rose to state the complaint. Looking round, the 
smuggler observed that two officers had taken their places 
at the door, and, seizing the lower sash of the window, he 


pulled it to him, and dashed it with great violence over 
Hosie's head, then vaulted into the road below, and walked 
quietly away, none daring to follow him. Captain 
M'Lachlan exclaimed, " That's a rare man-of-war's trick," 
while the other gentlemen indulged in a hearty laugh; 
but Hosie was rather seriously cut, and some difficulty 
was experienced in getting his head extricated from the 
broken window frame. 


Stationed over the country to assist the regular 
excisemen were officers, with smaller or larger bodies of 
assistants, as the necessity of the district might require. 
These were commonly called " rangers," the chief of whom 
was an officer of the name of Dougal, who resided in 
Kippen. He was a very quiet and inoffensive man, but 
powerful and of a self-reliant nature. He was much liked 
by the smugglers, and often told them that a smuggler 
deserved to be taken if he did not keep smugglers' hours. 
Mr. Dougal had been repeatedly warned of the threatening 
character of one of the worst of the class, who resided near 
the upper part of Arnprior Glen, but he treated these 
warnings lightly, saying that he was a match for him 
at any time. Once, when riding between the villages 
of Arnprior and Fin try, on accidentally looking round, he 
observed this man priming his pistol behind a dyke on 
the roadside, which enclosed a dense plantation of fir 
trees known as " the firs of Kippen." Being at the time 
unarmed, but possessed of considerable presence of mind, 
he suddenly dashed his hand into his pocket and took out 
a small spy-glass. Springing from his horse, he rushed to 
the place where the smuggler lay concealed, crying, 
"Come on, I am ready for you, my lad." The would-be 
assassin, taking the spy-glass for a pistol, fled into the 
wood, and Mr. Dougal rode on his way to Fintry. Some 
short time after this, Mr. Dougal went amissing, and dark 
suspicions floated about that he had been the victim of 
foul play. Almost six weeks had passed without any news 


of the missing ranger, when one day a shepherd on the 
farm of Muirend, in quest of some lost sheep, was search- 
ing a corry or deep ravine close to Boquhan Glen, and 
discovered the mutilated remains of Dougal. Well- 
grounded suspicion soon fell upon the man who had 
openly threatened to murder Dougal, and he was after- 
wards totally shunned by his former companions, and died 
a wandering outcast. 


A natural tower, composed of a huge mass of red 
sandstone rock, standing in front of a ravine at Muirend, 
where Dougal was found, perpetuates his name under the 
designation of " Dougal's Tower." 

On the other hand, it is traditionally related that 
this tower perpetuates the name of Dougall, a Covenanter, 
who had successfully made use of it as a hiding-place, 
while being pursued by the dragoons for attending a con- 
venticle or field-preaching at the Gribloch. 


The last smuggler known to engage in this precarious 
trade in Kippen parish was the late Daniel MacAllum, 
Thorntree, who carried on his " sma' still " in a secluded 
part of the " firs," on the shores of Loch Leggan, but, 
owing to the vigilant and rigorous laws of the Excise and 
the heavy penalties imposed, he gave up the practice 
about the year 1860. 



FEW ancient customs are so generally, yet so imper- 
fectly, known as that of black mail. It was, however, 
simply a lawful and beneficial service to the public 
which now falls to be performed by the police, or, in other 
words, money paid voluntarily by contract for the pro- 
tection of property against the depredations of migratory 
freebooters who lurked on the borders of the Highlands. 
One of the original documents still in the possession 
of the descendants of Mr. Dunmore of Ballikinrain is 
drawn up as a contract between James and John Graham, 
elder and younger, of Glengyle, and gentlemen, heritors 
and tenants, within the shires of Perth, Stirling, and Dum- 
barton. The latter put themselves under the protection 
of the Grahams for an annual payment of £4 per £100 of 
rental. For this sum, the cattle, sheep, and horses were 
practically insured against loss, as the Grahams agreed 
either to return the cattle stolen within six months or 
make payment of their true value. Pickerey, such as the 
lifting of cattle or sheep in small numbers, was not to be 
considered as coming under the agreement, but any num- 
ber above six was; and horses and cattle carried to the 
south, if not recoverable, were paid for by the Grahams at 
the discretion of the owners ; the contract to be nullified 
in the event of war. The contract concludes as follows : — 

" In witness whereof, 

Robert Bontein of Mildovan, for my lands of 
Balglas, in the paroch of Killern, being three hundred and 
fifty pound of valuation : and lands of Provanston in the 
paroch of Balfron, ninety-seven pound seven shilling 

James Napier of Ballikinrain, for my lands in the 
paroch of Killern, being two hundred and sixtie pound of 



valuation. And for my Lord Napier's lands in said 
paroch, being three hundred and twentie-eight pound of 
valuation, and for Culcreuch's lands in the paroch of 
Fintrie, being seven hundred and twentie-seven pound of 
valuation, and for said Culcreuch's lands in the paroch of 
Balfrone, being one hundred and ten pound valuation. 

Hugh Buchanan of Balquhan, for my lands of 
Boughan and Brunshogle, in the paroch of Killearn, being 
one hundred and seventy-three pound of valuation. 

Moses Buchanan of Glins, sixtie-six pound 

Alexander Wright of Puside, one hundred and 
foure pound and six shilling and eight-penny Scot 
valuation. Walter Monteath of Kyp, three hundred 
pounds valuation. 

James Key, portioner of Enblioy, for sixtiey-six pond 
Scots valuation. 

Robert Galbraith, portioner of Edinbelly, for 
thritie-three pound Scots valuation. 

Archibald Buchanan of Cremanan, for my land 
of Cremanan, in the paroch of Balfron, and . . . being 
two hundred and sixty-eight pound of valuation. 

Witnesses — William Johnstone, William M'Lea, Gil- 
bert Cowan, Alexander Yuill, John Paterson, Robert Dunn, 
Walter Monteath, John Buchanan, Thomas Wright, 
Archibald Leckie, Walter Monteath, Alexander Wright, 
Archibald Leckie, Walter Monteath, Walter Monteath, 
Robert Farrie, James Ure, John Buchanan, and James 

Da. Graeme, Witness. Ja. Grahame. 

John Smith, Witness. John Graham 


It would appear from the following letter that this 
contract was not disadvantageous to Mr. Graham : — 

"Ballikinrain, May 25, 1743. 
" Sir,— Notwithstanding of the contract entered into betwixt 
several gentlemen of the shyres of Stirling and Dumbarton, you, 
and I, anent keeping of a watch, whereby you was to pay yearly 
four per cent, of valuation ; yet I now agree with you for three per 
cent, for the lands you have contracted for ; and that the first term 
of Whitsunday, and in time coming during the standing of the con- 
tract. And I am, Sir, your most humble servant, 

"Ja. Grahame." 

The following receipt granted by Mr. Grahame of 
Glengyle to Mr. Robert Galbraith, for the payment of 
" watch-money " is probably the last of its kind. In the 
beginning of the following year (1745), the train of the 
rebellion was being laid. In July, Prince Charles had 
actually embarked for Scotland ; and by Martinmas, 
Glengyle's hands must have been filled with more impor- 
tant concerns : — 

Hill, 12th Dec, 1744. 
"Then received by me, James Grahame of Glengyle, from 
Robert Galbraith, portioner of Enbelly, fourtie shillings Scots 
money in full payt. of all bygone watch money due to me out of his 
portion of Enbelly preceeding Martimmas last as witness my hand 
place and date above written. 

" Ja. Grahame." 

There is marked on the back in the same hand, 
"Recit Glengile to Galbraith." 



THE parishioners of Kippen were singularly loyal to 
the National Covenant, that Covenant which con- 
sisted in an oath to establish and preserve civil and 
religious liberty. 

In 1660, Charles II. was restored to the throne, and 
nowhere was there greater rejoicing than in his ancient 
Kingdom of Scotland. Soon, however, the King and his 
counsellors showed their determination to sweep away all 
that had been gained by the Church of Scotland in the 
second Reformation from 1638 onward. The Solemn 
League and National Covenant were condemned as unlaw- 
ful oaths, copies of these being torn by the common hang- 
man at the Cross of Edinburgh on May 29, 1661, and the 
King issued a mandate that the Church of Scotland be 
restored to its rightful government by bishops. The 
Presbyterian Church, by the King's fiat, thus became an 
Episcopal Church, and the ministers were ordered to 
attend punctually the Bishops' Diocesan Courts, under 
pain of being punished as contemners of the King's 
authority. Most of them, however, especially in the west 
and south, ignored the summons, and rather devoted 
themselves to their pastoral work with all the more 
earnest diligence, not knowing how soon they might be 
separated from their flocks. That time soon came, and on 
the first day of November, 1662, four hundred churches in 
Scotland were shut. The churches were now empty, the 
bishops having had no suitable men to fill them ; as, how- 
ever, filled they must be, such men as could be found were 
pressed into the service. Burnet, an Episcopalian bishop 
himself, and a man who had the best opportunities of 
estimating their character, says of the successors of the 
ejected ministers in the new Episcopalian clergy, " They 
were the worst preachers I ever heard; they were ignorant 


to a reproach, and many of them were openly vicious. 
They were a disgrace to their orders and their sacred 


The ejected ministers were in many cases men 
eminent alike for their gifts, their attainments, and their 
godliness ; so it may be understood that the congregations 
could ill bear with those who supplanted pastors whom 
they loved and revered. They generally gave the new 
clergy the name of "curates." On their part many com- 
plaints were made that the people would not come to hear 

Some humorous stories are told in this connection, and 
M'Crie, in his " Story of the Scottish Church," relates the 
following incident : — " The ' curate,' annoyed at seeing so 
many empty seats in his church, sent a threatening 
message to the women of the parish, that if they did not 
come to church he would inform against them. Next 
Sabbath a number did put in an appearance, each with a 
child in her arms. The clergyman had not proceeded far 
with the service when one child began to cry, then 
another, and another, till the whole joined in chorus, and 
the voice of the preacher was drowned in the universal 
squall. He stormed and cursed, but was told it was his 
own fault, for they could not leave the children at home." 


If, however, the people were unwilling to hear the 
" curates," or receive their ministrations, they were quite 
as eager, if they had the opportunity, to listen to any of the 
old ministers, there being still a few who were unmolested 
in their work, those in particular who had been ordained 
before 1649. A large number of the ejected ministers, 
too, continued to exercise the functions of their ministry 
as best they could, preaching and baptising in private 
houses at first, and later at field meetings, which came to 
be called " Conventicles." 



WHEN these conventicles first began to be held, they 
were attended by great multitudes, coming peace- 
ably and unarmed to hear in some lonely glen the 
Word of God preached by one of those men whom they loved 
for their fidelity. The parishioners of Kippen had by this 
time become conspicuous in their attachment to the Solemn 
League and Covenant, and, in 1675, the sacrament of the 
Lord's Supper was dispensed in the night time to a very 
numerous meeting. Dr. Campbell, in his " Statistical 
Account," gives Arnbeg as the place of meeting, and 
according to others, it was at a place called " The Preach- 
ing Howe," a secluded dell within the Barony of Arn- 
manuel, but at no great distance from Arnbeg. Local 
tradition, however, selects that glen on the opposite side of 
the road, a short distance west from the mill dam of 
Broich, as " The Preaching Howe." 

One can fancy the scene in this secluded spot, where 
a great number could be so placed as easily to hear the 
speakers. It is a green and pleasant howe, or hollow, 
with a rippling brook meandering through its centre ; on 
either side is a spacious brae covered with delightful 
pastures, and rising with a gentle slope to a goodly height. 
It is related that meetings were held frequently at this 
place, and that soon after 1670, when Curate Young was 
settled in the parish, " troubles first began to be experi- 
enced in Kippen, Port of Menteith, and Gargunnock, con- 
nected with the preaching of the Gospel. Mr. John Law, 
Mr. Thomas Forrester, who had left the Episcopal Com- 
munion, and others, were in the habit of preaching to the 
people, and went so far as to ordain clandestinely Mr. 
John King, who afterwards suffered martyrdom, at Port of 
Menteith ; Mr. Archibald Riddell, third son of Sir Walter 
Biddell of that ilk, at Kippen ; and Mr. George Barclay at 

The late Rev. Patrick T. Muirhead, minister of the 
Free Church, Kippen, in a published lecture on "The- 


Covenanters," mentions one John Knox, who zealously 
helped forward the work of the Lord at these meetings, 
and explains that this John Knox was said to have been 
of the same family as his great namesake. The Reformer 
was always spoken of as a descendant of the family of 
Knox of Ranfurly, in Renfrewshire, who acquired the lands 
of Arnmanuel and Ladylands, in this parish, about the 
middle of the century, where they remained for some 
time, ultimately disposing of their Kippen property to 
Graham of Gartmore. 


FROM what follows we can have no doubt that one of 
Knox's principal coadjutors in those conventicles would 
be the proprietor of the almost adjoining estate of Shir- 
garton, James Ure. To the parishioners of Kippen all that 
concerns his sufferings and contendings has a special interest, 
inasmuch as he was a native of their parish, and a resident 
proprietor in it up to the day of his death, and the name 
of " Ure of Shirgarton " is still fragrant in local traditions. 
For several years before the stirring events of 1679, field 
meetings were apparently not uncommon in Kippen and 
neighbouring parishes, and many persons were apprehended 
and sent to Stirling, Glasgow, and other places. One 
Donald Connell, Buchlyvie, is referred to in particular, his 
crime being that he had been at a preaching by Mr. 
Riddell at Loch Leggan. Then James Ure of Shirgarton 
is recorded to have left the Episcopal communion, joined 
the persecuted ministers, had his children baptised by 
them, and as having so exposed himself to the rage of the 
Government and hatred of Mr. Robert Young, the curate, 
" who was much blamed as an intelligencer against him 
and others." 


An incident is worthy of mention here. Some 
soldiers in disguise were sent from Stirling in search of 


Mr. John King, and succeeded in apprehending him at 
Cardross-in-Menteith. The alarm was quickly spread 
through Menteith and Kippen, and the people rose to the 
rescue. The soldiers thought it was the safest way " to 
take him east of the mosses." However, his friends were 
beforehand, and encountered the party in " the moss 
beneath Boquhapple," below the village of Thornhill, and 
rescued their prisoner. We are told one Norrie was killed 
in the action by the soldiers. 


This little encounter may be taken as foreshadowing 
what was to come, but the ruling powers thought fit to 
try the effect of a small concession, so a certain number of 
ministers were, to use their term, "indulged," i.e., they 
were allowed, on certain conditions, to exercise the 
functions of the ministry in limited districts, and these 
numbered, according to Woodrow, forty-two ministers in 
all. The " indulgence " was clogged with conditions with 
which the more decided Presbyterians could not comply ; 
in particular, those who accepted it acknowledged the 
King's authority in matters of religion, and this, instead 
of being a boon, was rather hurtful to the Covenanters, 
and became the occasion of disastrous dissension and 
division. The " indulgence " of a few did not put a stop 
to the field meetings, and while the authorities were bent 
on suppressing them, those who attended began to take 
measures for their defence by going armed to the 
meetings. The authorities could not well suffer such a 
state of things to continue, especially when it is said that 
accounts were reaching the Council of conventicles 
attended by as many as five hundred armed men. 

Archbishop Sharpe, on 1st May, 1679, submitted an 
edict exceeding in severity anything that had hitherto 
been thought of, making it lawful for any officer, down to 
a sergeant, to kill, without trial, any man he should meet 
having arms if he supposed he was going to or from a 



Shortly afterwards, while travelling to St. Andrews, 
Sharpe was overtaken by a party of six Covenanters, and 
killed. Those immediately concerned in the deed made 
their escape to the west. It is said their leader, John 
Balfour of Kinloch — commonly known as " Burley " — 
came to Shirgarton, and passed a night with Ure. In 
Fifeshire there were few Covenanters, and Burton, in his 
" History," remarks that Balfour, when he and his friends 
" got as far west as Kippen, in Stirlingshire, found them- 
selves amongst the honest folk." There can be little 
doubt that the murder of Sharpe hastened on a struggle 
which was sooner or later inevitable. The assassination 
took place on May 3, 1679, and on the 29th, a party of 
eighty armed men, headed by Robert Hamilton, younger 
son of Sir Thomas Hamilton, of Preston, marched to 
Rutherglen, where, as usual on the anniversary of the 
Restoration, bonfires were burning in honour of the day. 
These they speedily extinguished, and a declaration was 
affixed to the Cross, condemning all the proceedings of 
Government since the restoration of Charles. This was 
followed up by burning the obnoxious Acts at the Cross — 
"as our enemies," they said, "have perfidiously and 
blasphemously burned our holy covenants, through several 
cities of these covenanted kingdoms." 


When the Rutherglen declaration was reported in 
Edinburgh, Claverhouse was forthwith despatched to the 
west with a body of dragoons, armed with unlimited 
powers to kill and destroy all whom he should find with 
arms. Coming quickly to Hamilton, he seized Mr. John 
King, previously rescued at Boquhapple, and about 
fourteen others. Next day, Sabbath, June 1, a large con- 
venticle had assembled at the foot of Loudon Hill. 
Claverhouse heard of it, and set out with his troops, 


carrying his prisoners along with him. When the watch- 
men on the outlook reported that the dragoons were 
coming, the armed men, to ensure the safety of the rest, 
resolved to advance to meet the foe. This they did, 
forming up at a place called Drumclog, with a swamp in 
front. Claverhouse urged his men across the morass, but 
" Burley " and Cleland, a young man of eighteen, were 
before them, and splashing through the bog, they were 
presently in a hand to hand conflict with the troops, who 
were thrown into confusion, two of their officers and about 
forty men being killed. Claverhouse had his horse 
killed under him by a thrust from a pitchfork, and with 
difficulty escaped with his life. He and his scattered 
forces, leaving their prisoners behind them, were fain to 
save themselves by a speedy flight. The Covenanters had 
only one man killed on the field, but five died of their 

A victory had been won, but now came the question, 
Should they, as formerly, disperse, ready to meet again at 
conventicles, or keep together ? Blood had been spilled, 
and well they knew Claverhouse would be eager for 
revenge. They thought it best to keep together, and 
defend themselves as best they could. The tidings spread 
far and wide that the west country men were up in arms, 
and soon the news came to Kippen. 


The Laird of Shirgarton buckled on his armour, 
mounted on his white horse, and took the road to Glasgow. 
We have it on evidence that, when he was tried in 
absence in 1682, William Millar, boatman at the Ford of 
Frew, deponed that, " about a fortnight before the defeat 
of Bothwell Bridge, he saw James Ure of Shirgarton, 
whom he knew very well, riding to Glasgow on a white 
horse, armed with sword and pistols, and a party of the 
rebels, consisting of twenty or thereby, at his back on foot ; 
some of them had swords and guns, and some not." 
Gathering thus the men of the district around him, he 


was not forgetful of what would be needed for the fray. 
In Ure's narrative, printed at length in M'Crie's " Memoirs 
of Veitch, Bryson," etc., he tells us, " I brought upwards 
of two stone of powder from home with me, and I did take 
the lead, and melted same, and cast the balls, when we lay 
in the Monk-lands ; so we were best provided of them all. 
There were few in the army that had powder and shot to 
shoot twice." In addition to those who came with him, 
Ure's company was soon joined by many more of their 
countrymen, who all acknowledged him as their captain. 
They now numbered about two hundred, " most of them 
well armed, two parts with guns, a third part with pikes." 

An army of between four and five thousand assem- 
bled, but instead of preparing for battle, valuable time 
was wasted in endless controversies and disputations, the 
principal matters in dispute relating to the " indulgence " 
and the " indulged," and to the owning or disowning of 
King Charles, and one cannot but sympathise with Ure 
when he said to them — " They were more taken up with 
other men's sins than their own, and it was our duty 
to begin with ourselves." 

Ure says, " we entreated them to go against the 
enemy, and let all debates alone till a free Parliament and 
a General Assembly;" and Hamilton having made an 
intemperate rejoinder, Ure, in his narrative, says — "I 
arose and told Robert Hamilton that I had a wife and five 
children, and that I had a little bit of an estate, and that 
I came to hazard all and my life to get the yoke of Prelacy 
and supremacy removed ; but for aught that I saw, they 
intended to tyrannise over our consciences, and lead us to 
a worse snare nor we were into, and for my part I would 
fight till the last drop of my blood before I went one step- 
length with them." 


His counsel seemed to prevail at the time, but subse- 
quent events showed there was no real agreement. Passing 
over those fruitless disputations on which so much precious 


time was wasted, we come to the 22nd of June — a Sabbath 
morning. By this time the King's army, under the com- 
mand of the Duke of Monmouth and Buccleuch, had 
reached the banks of the Clyde, near Bothwell. The 
Covenanters held the opposite bank, the river being 
crossed by a narrow bridge with a gateway in the centre, 
called Bothwell Bridge. Some attempts were made to 
negotiate, but the only terms the Duke could offer were — 
to lay down their arms and trust in his mercy, and they 
should be favourably dealt with. " Hamilton," says Ure, 
" laughed, and said, ' And hang next.' " 

Then the fight began. The bridge was the key of 
the position. The Royal army brought five cannon into 
action, while the Covenanters had only one. But a com- 
pany of resolute men, under Hackston of Rathillet, were 
there to defend the passage, and they were at once joined 
by Ure and his company. The enemy's fire was returned, 
and a volley of musketry must have done great execution, 
for Ure says, " they fled, both horse and foot. If we had 
had any person to have commanded us, we might have 
gained their cannon ; but if I should have gone without 
command, and if they turned on me, none would have 
relieved me." So finding they were not pursued, the 
Royalists came back and manned their guns, firing them, 
" but did no damage." Ure tells us, " I was necessitated 
to retire, so I turned back over the bell of the brae ; and 
as I saw none coming to assist, I was forced to retire/' 


The Duke's army numbered fifteen thousand ; that of 
the Covenanters, according to Ure's estimate, never ex- 
ceeded four thousand foot and two thousand horse, but he 
adds that " if we had agreed we would have been triple 
that number. The left wing fled at once ; the right stood 
a little, but not so long as to put on a pair of gloves; so 
they all fled, and I turned with all my speed; indeed 
I was beholden to my horse." It appears that a faithful 


servant had been careful to have his horse in readiness. 
From the time the fight began at the bridge to the flight 
was about eight hours. The loss of the Covenanters at 
the bridge was very trifling ; Ure gives it as not ten men. 
At the final assault a number must have fallen; and 
Claverhouse and his dragoons, eager to revenge their 
defeat at Drumclog, killed many in the pursuit. 

Four hundred Covenanters are said to have been 
killed in the battle, and twelve hundred surrendered as 
prisoners. To speak of the hardships endured by these 
prisoners, among whom were some Kippen men, confined 
for five months, day and night, in Greyfriars Churchyard 
in Edinburgh, is too gruesome a tale. As to how it fared 
with Ure immediately after the battle — how he escaped 
the pursuers, what course he took, or how he got back to 
Kippen, we have been unable to trace. 


It would appear that shortly after the suppression of 
the rising, Ure was summoned by a lion-herald sent to his 
house; and on his non-appearance, witnesses were called 
to prove that he had been with the rebels, and then 
sentence of forfeiture of all his goods was passed. After 
his forfeiture, his rents and movables were seized; up- 
wards of thirty times parties of soldiers came in quest of 
him, and remained for weeks in his house, and among his 
tenants. A reward of £100 was ultimately offered to any 
one " who will bring in the said James Ure, dead or alive." 

On the 9th of January, 1682, Ure, along with a num- 
ber of others — several from Kippen parish — was formally 
tried (in absence). The indictment charged him and the 
rest with the murder of two soldiers, names not given, 
drags in the murder of Archbishop Sharpe, the Sanquhar 
Declaration, and the affair at Aird's Moss, with which 
Ure had no connection whatever. Millar, the boatman at 
Ford of Frew, was the only witness cited against him, and 
we have already referred to his evidence. The Lords 


on 17th January following found the libel fully proved, and 
adjudged him with the others "to be executed to the 
death as traitors, when they shall be apprehended; their 
names, memory, and honours to be extinct — that their 
posterity may never have place nor be able to bruik or 
joyse any honour, office, &c, and to have forfaulted all and 
sundry their lands, &c." 

The Privy Council had received from Curate Young 
a list of heritors in Western Stirlingshire who had been at 
Bothwell Bridge. Here we find James Ure, of Shirgarton ; 
David Forrester, of Kilmore (Culmore is in Gargunnock 
parish) ; Alexander Buchanan, Fiar of Buchlyvie ; Donald 
Connel, portioner of Buchlyvie; Walter Leckie, of May 
(Mye is in the parish of Drymen); Thomas Miller 
there ; Arthur Dugald, Arnmanuel ; John Dugald, his 
son ; and John M'Kenzie there. 

The diligent search made for Ure led him for a time 
to seek concealment and safety in Ireland. During his 
absence his wife and family were exposed to much suffer- 
ing. His corn and other goods, and sometimes those 
of his tenants, were wasted by the soldiery. The tenants 
durst not pay the rents, chiefly grain, but they kept them 
up, sending the lady secret information. She, again, em- 
ployed some trusty persons to receive and remove them, as 
if for themselves. Ultimately they were conveyed to her 
for the support of the family. Ure's friends, however, 
while he was in Ireland, bought up his forfeiture in order 
that his family could remain in the house. 


Even at this time conventicles were not quite put 
down in the parish of Kippen. On June 9, 1682, we find 
Mr. Archibald Riddell, already mentioned, who had been 
allowed out of prison for a short period to see his dying 
mother, accused of breaking his confinement by going to 
the parish of Kippen, keeping conventicles, and baptising 
children, for which offences he was sent to the Bass Rock. 


A service was also held at Gribloch, where many were 
apprehended, among them the old lady of Shirgarton > 
James Ure's mother, then above seventy years of age, and 
a son of hers, Mr. Peter Rollo ; also, Margaret Macklinn, 
wife to Arthur Dougall, miller at Newmiln, a very godly 
man. They were carried to Glasgow Tolbooth, and 
crowded together in the prison. Ure's mother fainted in 
the throng, and petitions for liberty, or leave at least to 
be allowed to the door for air, were stubbornly refused, and 
she died amongst the crowd. The rest of the prisoners 
were carried to Dunnottar Castle, where they were con- 
fined some time, and afterwards several of them were 
shipped to be sent abroad, among these being Margaret 
Philip, wife of Donald Connel, but who was landed at 
Leith by the skipper, he having been previously bribed 
for this purpose. 


After Ure had been six months in Ireland, the 
longing to see his wife and family was too much for him, 
and he returned to Scotland, and made his way home by 
night. His wife contrived to keep him so closely con- 
cealed that months passed before anyone suspected he was 
in the countiy. When it leaked out that Ure had 
returned to Shirgarton, the most strenuous efforts were 
made to apprehend him. He found concealment for a 
considerable time in that thickly wooded dell in the upper 
part of Boquhan Glen, which is locally known as "the 
Kippen Trossachs," where it would not be difficult for one 
acquainted with the place to find tolerably secure shelter. 
His wife frequently kept him company in his hiding-place, 
and many nights they passed there during the severe 
winter of 1685. Before daybreak he used to retire to the 
house of a friendly tenant of his own, one Duncan 
Chrystal, of Muirend, and hid during the day in a place 
made in the " corn mow " in the barn. Muirend is quite 
close to the upper part of Boquhan Glen, a solitary place 


enough, now included in the estate of Wright Park, but 
at that time forming part of Ure's estate, in the barony of 
Shirgarton. The old farmhouse of Muirend was inhabited 
within the last fifty years, and, as it was one of the most 
old-fashioned " biggin's " in the district, in all probability 
it was the identical house occupied by Duncan Chrystal 
almost two hundred and twenty years ago. 


Mrs. Ure, whose affections led her to share the 
sufferings of her husband, returned occasionally to her 
home to visit her family ; and as the authorities could not 
lay hands on the laird, a party of soldiers was sent to 
apprehend the lady " for going to conventicles and con- 
versing with her husband, now intercommuned." She 
was carried, with a child on her breast, to Stirling. After 
having been kept there fourteen days, she was taken to 
Edinburgh, and lodged in the Canongate Tolbooth, 
remaining in that prison for other fourteen days. There T 
after she was summoned to appear at the Council, but 
happily met with a friend who interested himself in her 
behalf — Blairdrummond, chancellor to the Earl of Perth — 
and she was allowed to go without appearing before the 


During these years, Ure made many hairbreadth 
escapes, and numerous stories regarding them lived long in 
local tradition. Rev. P. T. Muirhead relates the following : 
A party of dragoons had been sent from Glasgow to 
apprehend Ure. Coming over the moor by Campsie and 
Fintry, they had halted for refreshments at the little 
wayside inn at Lernock Toll. It so happened that the 
girl in waiting had been a servant at Shirgarton. Some- 
thing said by the soldiers led her to conclude that they 
were in pursuit of her old master, and while they were 


carousing she managed quietly to steal out, and made all 
the speed she could over the four miles or so to Shirgarton 
House, where she burst into the house with the cry, " The 
soldiers are coming." Fortunately, the attractions of the 
little hostelry had detained them at Lernock, but she was 
none too soon, for, as the story goes, just as she spoke 
they heard the sound of horses galloping along the road 
above the village of Kippen. It was late in summer or 
early in autumn — at any rate, the tall corn was standing. 
Ure had just time to rush from the house and lie down 
among " the vittal " {i.e., the long corn), when the troopers 
arrived, but missed their prey. 

Another story is that he was one day in a field near 
the house, with one or two of his servants, some horses 
also being in the field. Looking up, he espied a party of 
troopers making directly for them. "I am catcht this 
time," exclaimed Ure. One of the servants said, " Maybe 
we can do something for ye yet," and forthwith flung 
himself on the back of one of the horses, and set off as 
hard as he could make it gallop. The soldiers fell into the 
snare, and gave chase with all speed to the man who so 
generously acted as a decoy to save his master. Thus 
they were drawn off, and Ure had time to find a place of 

Sometimes he found shelter in a friendly house. It 
is said he frequently used to dream that the soldiers were 
coming ; that, awaking, he got up and fled with all haste. 
Usually it did happen that they actually came, and some- 
times found the bedclothes still warm, when they would 
rage exceedingly, and even carry off the master of the 
house a prisoner with them. 


At last the final indulgence, or toleration, came in 
1687, the last year of the reign of King James. This 
indulgence was meant, as it was well understood, mainly 
for behoof of the Roman Catholics, but as it was no 


longer burdened with the old conditions, all Presbyterians 
had the benefit for a time. 

Ure's troubles were now well nigh over. The Presby- 
terian people of Kippen built for themselves a church on 
the eastern boundary of the parish, near to the old 
mansion house of Glentirran, which stood about 200 yards 
south-west from the old bridge of Boquhan. Ure was 
active, along with Boquhan and Glentirran, in this work. 
Mr. George Barclay, for whom a good manse was also 
provided, was settled as their minister ; nearly the whole 
population attached themselves to his ministry, " none 
staying with the curate but a few Jacobite lairds and 
their adherents." 

At the time of the Revolution we find Ure again in 
arms, and several of his old associates with him, guarding 
the Convention of Estates in Edinburgh. In due course 
his forfeiture was declared to be null, and his name stands in 
the records among others who had been unjustly forfeited, 
"yet he behoved in gratitude to pay to his friends the 
sum they advanced in kindness to his family in buying his 
forfeiture before." We next find him holding a commis- 
sion in Argyle's regiment, and continuing with it till the 
troubles were over. During his absence, Cannon and 
Buchan, with a party of King James' adherents, paid 
Kippen a visit, and some of Ure's goods, and those of his 
tenants, were carried off. They also attacked his house, 
• which," according to one account, " his lady did man- 
fully keep out against them." 


After these events Ure lived for many years in peace. 
He survived the rebellion in 1715, and saw the providence 
of God in making some drops of the cup his persecutors 
had meted out to him pass over to themselves. He con- 
tinued faithful to his principles against the Jacobite 
lairds and the curates to the last, and with them he had 
many encounters. He was kind to the sick. After all 


his troubles he died in peace in his own house at Shir- 
garton in 1716, and was buried in the churchyard of 


While the graveyard was under repair in 1874, the 
Rev. Mr. Wilson caused to be inserted into the wall,, 
immediately opposite the old, massive, moss-grown table 
tombstone, a simple slab bearing the following words :— 
" The burial place of James Ure, the Covenanter." Ure 
was much lamented by all the good people who had been 
acquainted with him, and although holding a position 
subordinate to the leading Reformers in the stirring times 
in which he lived, yet he was a good man and true, under 
many trials faithful to the principles which he held to be 
sacred, and to the confession of his faith, for which he was 
ready to suffer the loss of all, counting not his life dear to 

The old mansion house of Shirgarton, where Ure 
lived, was taken down in 1845 by Mr. Leckie Ewing of 
Arngomery, and occupied the site of the present farm 
steading of Shirgarton. The estate continued in posses- 
sion of the family of Ure till some time after the middle 
of the eighteenth century. 



IT may be interesting to mention that, though Ure has 
now no representative in the lands of Shirgarton, one of 
the heritors of the parish, proprietor of a neighbouring 
estate, is a descendant of the family, viz., William 
Galbraith, Esq., of Blackhouse, and some interesting heir- 
looms of the family are in his possession. 

Mary Ure, granddaughter of the Covenanter, married 
Dr. Duncan Glasford. Christian, their second daughter, 
married Thomas Littlejohn, Provost of Stirling, and left a 
family. One of their daughters, Christian, married 
William Galbraith, Esq., of Blackhouse and Littlekerse, 
town clerk of Stirling, whose grandson, William, is thus 
the great-great-grandson of Mary Ure. A younger 
daughter, Helen, married Captain Hugh Pearson, R.N. 
son of Mr. Pearson of Kippenross ; Katherine, a third 
daughter, married Ebenezer Connal, son of Provost 
Connal, of Stirling. 


THE present house of Shirgarton was built and 
occupied by Dr. and Mrs. Glasford, probably not 
before 1750. It is now the property of J. A. 
Harvie Brown, of Dunipace and Shirgarton. The Rev. 
P. T. Muirhead gives the following abbreviated translation 
of a charter in the possession of Robert Leckie Ewing, 
Esq.:— - 

"Charter by John Earl of Mar, as superior of the lands, 
granting, confirming, and of new giving, to James Ure and Christina 
Wryt, his spouse, all and whole the lands of Sheirgartan, with the 
houses, etc., lying within the stewartry of Monteith and County of 
Perth : which lands formerly belonged to William Leckye, vassal or 
feuar of Poldar, to be holden in feu by all the righteous and old 
measures and boundaries, for payment yearly of (tredecem merearm 


et octodecem denarium usualis monete regni Scotiae) thirteen 
merks and eighteen pennies Scots (equal to 14s. 61M. sterling) at 
the accustomed terms (viz., Pentecostes et Sancti Martini) by equal 

" Signed and the Earl's ain proper seal appended at Holyrood 
House 22 Nov., 1619, before these witnesses : Sir John Murray of 
Touchadame, Bart.; Alexander Leckye de ibid; Adam Shields, 
writer's clerk ; Alexander Stirling, servant to the said Sir John 
Murray of Touchadame ; James Williamson, writer in Stirling." 


A CURIOUS and somewhat interesting incident 
associated with Ure is as follows: — Curate Young 
had a piece of Ure's ground, called " the beddal's 
half-acre," annexed to his glebe, while he had no access to 
appear to defend his right. One morning in harvest he 
gathers his tenants, shears the ground, and leads home the 
grain to his own house ; but the Government made him 
pay well for it. The office of " beddal," both in pre- 
Reformation times and during the periods of Episcopal 
supremacy subsequent to the Reformation, was very 
different in point of importance from the office that goes 
by that name now. 

Mr. Wilson gives an interesting account of the beddal- 
ship of Kippen, as found in the register of the Diocesan 
Synod of Dunblane, which reads — 

"At Dunblane, the 12th October, 1680, it being represented to 
the Bishope and Synod that James Ure, called of Shirgarton, who 
pretends right to the beddal-ship of the Kirk of Kippen, has not 
only been a notorious separatist himself, these many years bygone, 
but also ane intolerable instigator of others to the same, and a con- 
stant fomenter of the present schism in the Church, a disowner of 
the ordinances and minister in his paroche, and a person active in 
the late rebellion, declared rebel therefore, who lykwise will not be 
ruled himself, nor his substitutes by the minister and kirk-session 
in what concerns his office as beddal. Upon these and other con- 
siderations the Bishop and Synod doe declare the said beddalship 
vacant, and doe depose and discharge the said James Ure and any 


of his substitutes whatsomever, deriving right from him, from exer- 
cising the said office in all time coming or uplifting the dues thereof, 
with certification of being proceeded against, conform to church 
order, hereby giving full power to the minister and kirk-session to 
choose, instale, and direct their own beddal, from this time forth, at 
their pleasure, and invest him in the dues belonging thereof." 

It will be observed from the foregoing that the notice 
implies that the duties had been in whole or in part per- 
formed by substitutes. We also find it mentioned in 
connection with what is said about the " half-acre," that 
the dispute was renewed after the Revolution. There was 
a process against Ure by the Rev. Michael Potter, minister 
of Kippen. The Presbytery of Dunblane had designed as 
part of the glebe half-an-acre of Shirgarton's lands. Ure 
pled that his ground was not kirk-lands, but held feu of 
the Forresters of Kilmore. The Presbytery forthwith 
dispatches sheriff-officers, accompanied by soldiers, to 
deforce him from possession. It is related that the guid- 
wives of the tenants of Shirgarton turned out en masse, 
and with stones and other missiles drove off the officers 
and the soldiers. 




ON the 9th of August, 1902, the inhabitants of 
Kippen and the surrounding district celebrated 
the coronation of King Edward VII. and Queen 
Alexandra with an enthusiasm and display of loyalty 
which could not be surpassed. Union Jacks, Royal 
Standards, pennants of all sizes, and mottoes, floated 
from nearly every housetop, while arches and streamers 
crossed the streets at various points. From early dawn 
an unusual stir predominated, and the proceedings of the 
day began at eight o'clock with the church bells ringing 
out joyous peals for about an hour. At half-past ten the 
school children assembled at the Public School, and from 
thence marched with their teachers to the Parish Church, 
where, at eleven o'clock, a special coronation service was 
conducted by the Rev. J. G. Dickson, minister of the 
parish ; Rev. H. W. Hunter, United Free Church ; and 
the Rev. D. R. Kilpatrick, Dunallan. 

On leaving the church, the children and adults formed 
into procession, and, headed by the local pipe band, 
marched through the village to Cauldhame, and then to 
the village recreation field, where, on arrival, all were 
entertained to refreshments. Immediately thereafter, 
each child, from the age of fourteen years to as many 
months, was presented with a handsome coronation medal, 
several ladies gracefully making the presentation. 
Stephen Mitchell, Esq., of Boquhan, made a short speech 
appropriate to the occasion, and called for three cheers for 
the King and Queen, which were heartily given. A long 
programme of sports was entered upon with much 
enthusiasm. The duties of chieftain of the sports 
were ably carried out by John Monteath, Esq., Wright 
Park, assisted by the Rev. J. G. Dickson, Rev. H. W. 
Hunter, and Mr. Paul, Glentirran, while the following 
acted as handicappers, starters, etc. : — Messrs. W. J. 
Buchanan, Forth Vineyard; John Robertson, Cairn 


Cottage ; David Welsh, Burnside ; Andrew Kay, Little- 
kerse ; Robert Dougall, Post Office ; William M'Queen, 
Shirgarton ; William Chrystal, Oxhill ; and William 
Dougall, Post Office. 

A pleasing feature of the entertainment was the 
dancing by the adults, in real Scotch style, on the beauti- 
ful, smooth, green sward, to the inspiring strains of the 
pipes, the music being supplied by Messrs. Peter M'Cowan, 
Arngomery ; James Duncanson, Larne Smithy ; and 
Alexander Macdiarmid, Renton Cottage. 

At the finish of the programme, Mr. Monteath, in a 
loyal and patriotic speech, said this was a fitting occasion 
for them to give expression to their thankfulness that His 
Majesty's life had been spared, and that he was now able 
to wear the crown, which was the symbol of the greatness, 
power, and splendour of the British Empire, and concluded 
his remarks by calling for three cheers for the King and 
Emperor, which were right loyally responded to. After 
singing " God save the King," the procession was again 
formed, and marched from the field to the Cross of the 
village, and there dispersed. 

As twilight wore on, and the evening advanced, no 
abatement of the loyal enthusiasm took place. Several of 
the houses became brilliant with fairy and Chinese 
lanterns, while overhead wires, emblazoned with illumina- 
tions, from the premises of Mr. Gilchrist, clothier, and 
others, crossed the street. A novel and original bonfire 
was also erected by Mr. Gilchrist, who had constructed a 
huge iron frame similar in design to a sledge, on which 
was built a stack of all sorts of inflammable material to a 
height of ten feet. About ten o'clock in the evening this 
bonfire was lighted, a party of youths being told off to draw 
it through the principal streets of the village, and as it 
was drawn along, old and young gathered in its train. 
With the glare and the sparks flying, accompanied by the 
cheers of the children, the scene can be better imagined 
than described. A ball also took place in the Public Hall, 
and was carried on with much zest till about half-past 

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